Alexander Mickelthwate – Okla. City Philharmonic

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Alexander Mickelthwate is the newly appointed Music Director of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic and Music Director Emeritus of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Since his appointment in 2006, Alexander has played a pivotal role in the development of the orchestra, which culminated in a highly successful and critically acclaimed performance at Carnegie Hall in May 2014 as part of the Spring For Music festival.

Alexander began his career in North America as Assistant Conductor with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and then Associate Conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Essa-Pekka Salonen. He has guest conducted the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Houston Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Milwaukee Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic and Toronto Symphony amongst others.

Alexander gave his European debut was with the Hamburg Symphony in 2006. He has also conducted the Stuttgart Radio Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen and NDR Hannover.

Through very strong and passionate community engagement Alexander has played a major role in significantly raising the overall Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra budget enabling them to increase the season by two weeks.

Born and raised in Frankfurt Germany to a musical family, Alexander received his degree from the Peabody Institute of Music. He studied conducting under Fredric Prausnitz and Gustav Meier as well as with Seiji Ozawa, Andre Previn, Daniel Barenboim and Robert Spano at Tanglewood.

Chair of the Day

Robert Clements is Executive Vice-President of Clements Foods Co., with responsibility for Finance & Administration. Clements Foods manufactures food condiments including Peanut Butter, Preserves & Jellies, Mayonnaise, Salad Dressings, Mustard, Syrups, Barbecue Sauce and Vinegar. The company was founded in 1953 by Robert’s father and grandfather and is now in its 65th year of family ownership and management. Clements Foods employs 225 people and operates two manufacturing facilities, Oklahoma City, OK and Lewisville, TX, totaling 180,000 square feet . Their products are distributed throughout the United States and are exported to Mexico, Europe and the Middle East.

Robert is very active in the community. He serves on the Boards of the United Way of Central Oklahoma, the Regional Food Bank Foundation, the Oklahoma City Philharmonic and Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center where he also serves as Treasurer. In addition, he is President of the Board of Trustees of the Kirkpatrick Foundation, a Trustee of the Library Endowment Trust and on the Board of Visitors of the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art at the University of Oklahoma. He has been a member of the Rotary Club of Oklahoma City since 1992 and is a Past President. Also, he is Past President of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic Board, the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma Board and the Library Endowment Trust. Previously, he served on the Boards of Allied Arts, Science Museum Oklahoma and the Mental Health Association of Oklahoma County.

Robert received his A.B. degree in Economics from Dartmouth College and his M.B.A. from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University.

Robert and his wife, Sody, recently celebrated their 29th wedding anniversary. They have two sons, Robert and William They are members of All Souls’ Episcopal Church where Robert has served on the Vestry and as Junior and Senior Warden.


Capt. Michael Black

Michael F. Black graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics.  He was commissioned through the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps program in May 1993.  He earned a Master of Science degree in Management from Troy State University in May 1994.  Upon completion of flight training at NAS Whiting Field, FL and Reese AFB, TX, he was designated a Naval Aviator in February 1996.

His sea duty assignments include tours with Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron FOUR (VQ-4) at Tinker AFB, OK as a junior officer qualifying as an E-6B Instructor Pilot and Mission Commander Evaluator; USS Enterprise (CVN-65) home ported in Norfolk, VA as a Catapult and Arresting Gear Officer, where he assisted in the launch and recovery of more than 10,000 aircraft in support of Operations ENDURING and IRAQI FREEDOM; Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron THREE (VQ-3) as a department head; and with the “Shadows” of VQ-4 as Commanding Officer from April 2011 to April 2012.

Black’s shore assignments include Training Squadron TWO (VT-2) as a T-34C Instructor Pilot; Naval Personnel Command as VQ Assignments and VQ/VT Maritime Placement Officer responsible for detailing more than 800 constituents; OPNAV N2/N6 as the E-6B TACAMO Requirements Officer and Strategic Command and Control (C2) Systems Branch Head where he managed a combined budget of more than $2.4 billion; and the Department of Defense Chief Information Officer serving as Deputy Director of Nuclear C2 Capabilities; and Deputy Commander, Strategic Communications Wing ONE (SWC-1)

He assumed duties as Commander, Strategic Communications Wing ONE and Task Force 124 in March 2018.

Black has logged more than 4,100 flight hours in six different military aircraft and his personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal and various other service and unit awards

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