The Office of Communication develops publicity campaigns for performances, special events, and national concert tours; creates audience development plans; writes and edits news stories, feature articles, and biographies; works with members of the local and national media; designs and produces CDs, brochures, flyers, and a bimonthly newsletter and other direct mail pieces with an international circulation; represents “The President’s Own” at concerts and national conventions; advances the band’s annual concert tour and manages sponsors’ tickets and publicity efforts; maintains the website, www.marineband.marines.mil; and oversees social media initiatives.
Master Gunnery Sergeant Amanda Simmons
Communication Strategy Chief Master Gunnery Sergeant Amanda Simmons joined “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band in April 2003. She was appointed Assistant Communication Strategy Chief in June 2006 and to her current position in January 2013. Master Gunnery Sgt. Simmons began her musical instruction on piano at age 6 and cello at age 9. After graduating in 1996 from Manheim Central High School, she earned a bachelor’s degree in communication with a minor in marketing from La Salle University in Philadelphia in 2000. In 2007, she earned a master’s degree in public communication from American University in Washington, D.C.
Prior to joining “The President’s Own,” Master Gunnery Sgt. Simmons worked as a public relations specialist for O’Keeffe & Company, a full-service marketing communications firm in Alexandria, Va.
Gunnery Sergeant Rachel Ghadiali
Assistant Communication Strategy Chief Gunnery Sergeant Rachel Ghadiali joined “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band in June 2006. She was appointed to this position in July 2014. Gunnery Sgt. Ghadiali began her musical training on piano at age 5 and saxophone at age 10. After graduating in 1995 from Herbert Hoover High School in Clendenin, she attended Lenoir-Rhyne College in Hickory, N.C., where she earned a bachelor’s degree in music in 1999. Upon graduation, she joined the United States Marine Corps and attended recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island in Beaufort, S.C. In May 2000, she reported to the Quantico Marine Band at Marine Corps Base Quantico in Quantico, Va., where she served one enlistment. In 2016 she earned a master's degree in public relations and corporate communications from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
Prior to joining “The President’s Own,” Gunnery Sgt. Ghadiali worked as the promotions director for Salem Communications’ WAVA 105.1 FM in Washington D.C.
Staff Sergeant Chase Baran
Communication strategist Staff Sergeant Chase Baran joined “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band in October 2018. Staff Sgt. Baran began his musical training on trumpet at age 11. Upon graduating from Archer High School in Lawrenceville in 2013, he attended the University of Georgia in Athens, where he performed with the Georgia Redcoat Band from 2013-17 and earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations in 2017. Prior to joining "The President's Own," Staff Sgt. Baran worked for Mercedes-Benz USA, supporting the company's efforts in corporate communications, internal communications, and community relations.
Gunnery Sergeant Brian Rust
Graphic Designer Gunnery Sergeant Brian Rust joined “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band in June 2006. Gunnery Sgt. Rust began his musical training on piano at age 10 and on saxophone at age 12. Upon graduating from Uintah High School in Vernal in 2000, he attended Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, Utah, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations and a minor in business management in 2006.
Prior to joining “The President’s Own,” Gunnery Sgt. Rust worked with University Communications at BYU and the TriCounty Health Department in Vernal.
Staff Sergeant Christian Thesken
Digital Content Creator Staff Sergeant Christian Thesken joined “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band in December 2020. Upon graduating from Colerain High School in Cincinnati in 2014, he studied graphic communication at the University of Cincinnati at Blue Ash. Prior to joining "The President's Own," Staff Sgt. Thesken joined the U.S. Navy Reserve in 2018 as a mass communication specialist and also worked for the Cincinnati Arts Association where he promoted performances for Broadway in Cincinnati and Cincinnati Music Hall.