The Midwest Pipe Band Association

MWPBA Adjudicators have distinct levels in the drumming and piping disciplines for both band and solo.

Adjudication Levels:
LEVEL PIPING JUDGE DRUMMING JUDGE
FULL May judge all grades of band and solo competition in the discipline in which they are qualified
ASSOCIATE May judge novice through 2 in the solos, and Grade 5 through 3 in band competition in the discipline in which they are qualified
ENSEMBLE May judge all band grades in ensemble playing
PIOBAIREACHD May judge to the grade consistent with status as a FULL or ASSOCIATE adjudicator. -

 

Sanctioned Band Contests require the following qualified judges: 2 Piping, 1 Drumming, 1 Ensemble

For additional information, see the Adjudicator Qualification Criteria, or contact the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Current Piping Judges:

Piping Judge

Qualification Biography
Band Ensemble Solo Piobaireachd

Greg Abbott
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full Full

Greg Abbott was born and raised in Michigan. He learned to play the pipes in Windsor Ontario. Greg would later play with the Scottish Society of Windsor, the Guelph Pipe Band, City of Detroit and the Windsor Police. He has had great instructors like John Goodnow, Ed Neigh, Capt. John MacLellan and Willie Connell.

Greg has had many solo prizes in the amateur and open contests. In 1997 he won the Piobaireachd Society Canada Gold Medal at Maxville and at Grandfather Mountain he has won the Open Piobaireachd 6 times.

For twenty years he has been an instructor at the North American Academy of Piping and Drumming with Sandy Jones in North Carolina. Greg is both a high school teacher and a reed maker.  

Chris Apps
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full   Full

For the last 30+ years Chris has been quietly perfecting the art of bagpipe reed making and reed adjustment. His small and fiercely loyal customer base appreciates the craftsmanship that goes into every product he produces. Today many pipers rely on his Complete Guide to Highland Bagpipe Reeds for guidance on adjusting their reeds.

Chris has been playing pipes since the age of ten and was originally taught by James Archibald Templeton from Lesmahagow, Scotland.  Chris took further piobaireachd tutelage from Pipe Major Evan MacRae and from Bob Brown Jr. the son of Bob Brown of Balmoral.

In 1986, after many successful tours of the games in Scotland, Chris was invited to come to the States to join the then grade one Kansas City St Andrews Pipe Band. During the 1990’s Chris was back in the UK where he joined the grade two Clan Sutherland pipe band and became the ‘soundman’ for the band, making the reeds and tuning the band for competition. The band went on to become the grade two Champion of champions in 1997.

P/Maj Brian Donaldson
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full Full

Brian, from Cardenden in Fife, was taught to play the pipes by his father, Pipe Major Andrew Donaldson, himself a renowned piper and teacher. After leaving school, Brian served his apprenticeship as a bagpipe maker in Edinburgh at ‘Inveran House’ under the guidance of Jimmy Tweedie.

At a young age Brian was playing with the world-famous Dysart & Dundonald pipe band, winning all the major championships in Grade 1. In 1978, Brian enlisted in the Scots Guards and served with the regiment all over the world. He passed his Pipe Majors course at the Army school of piping, Edinburgh Castle in 1982. After serving in the Falklands war, he was posted to the Army School of Piping as an instructor for 3 years. On his return to the 2nd Battalion, he was promoted to Pipe Sergeant and shortly after the amalgamation of both Battalions in 1993; Brian was promoted to the rank of Pipe Major in 1995.

His tuition skills and playing ability were in demand, and in 1998 he became Pipe Major at the Army Training Regiment Glencourse. Eventually the Military centralized all army piping and drumming, and Brian served out his 22 years at the ‘Army School of Bagpipe & Highland Drumming’ in Edinburgh.

Throughout Brian’s military career, he has become one of the most renowned pipers in the British Army, following in the footsteps of Pipe Major Willie Ross and Pipe Major Angus MacDonald.

Brian has achieved an endless list of prizes including: the Gold Medal Oban; the Gold medal and 2 Clasps at Skye; The Bratach Gorm (The McCrimmon Banner) London; 2nd in the Gold medal at the Northern Meetings 3 times; the Donald Macdonald Quaich; the MSR Argyllshire Gathering 3 times; MSR Northern Meetings achieving a double in 1984 winning both MSR competitions at Oban and Inverness in the same year; the MSR London; and numerous invites to the famous Grants/Glenfiddich whisky invitational competition. 

Mike Kotch
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full   Full  

Mike started playing in 1996 in Minnesota and was initially taught by Mike Gillis and then studied with Andrew Hoag while playing with the MacAlester College pipe band.

In 2000, Mike took all firsts at Alma in grade 1 in a large field after which he moved up to the open. In late 2001 he joined the Kansas City St. Andrew’s pipe band in grade 2 and competed with them until 2006.

After a short stint in California with the J Coyne Memorial pipe band in G2, Mike joined the City of Chicago pipe band and remained there until 2012. He then joined the Midlothian Scottish pipe band of which he is still a member.

Mike’s passion is instruction and has been teaching actively since 1998. 

Andrew Lewis
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full   Full  

Andrew has won numerous solo awards, including 2nd place at the United States Silver Medal Piobaireachd Competition in 2013, and was the Overall winner of the prestigious Nicol-Brown Amateur Invitational Piping Competition in 2004.

He is currently the Pipe Sergeant for the Macalester College Pipe Band and an accredited full piping adjudicator.

Scott McCawley
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Associate   Associate

Scott began piping in 1976 as a cadet at West Point and has played with and pipe majored the Tunes of Glory, Invermich Gaelic Society, University of Chicago, and Chicago Caledonian. Scott plays with Midlothian Scottish, having competed at the Worlds ten times, winning Best Overseas Band, Grade III, in 1993.

In years of solo competition Scott has attained Grade One status in light music and Open status in piobaireachd.  Scott LOVES piobaireachd.  He designed the Piobaireachd Silver Medal for the Winter Storm competition.

Scott has been on the adjudicator panel for many years.  He currently serves as Vice President of the MWPBA and participates on the Music Board.  He is a private piping instructor, especially for piobaireachd.

Scott was honored this past year (2021) with the “Kinsman of the Year” Award for piping for the Thistle and Heather Highland Dancers weekly for the residents of Caledonia Senior Living during the Covid lockdown.

Did he mention he loves piobaireachd?

David McNally
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full   Full

David McNally of Independence, Missouri has been an active part of the piping and drumming world for the past 35 years. A professional grade soloist, he has taken prizes all over the United States, Canada and Scotland, and has placed in the Silver Medal Piobaireachd competition at the prestigious MHAF Winter Storm.

David became a judge for the MWPBA at the age of 19. He has also taught several students that have gone on to be successful pipers, as well as a few local area bands.

In bands, David has been a member of the Grade 2 Kansas City St. Andrew's, The Grade 2 and Grade 1 City of Chicago, the Grade 1 78th Fraser Highlanders and currently the Grade 2 Midlothian Scottish.

 Stephen R. MacNeil
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full   Full  

Stephen R. MacNeil has a career consisting of 25 years of successful open piping plus 34 years experience in Grade 1 pipe bands with The MacNish Distillery, St. Thomas Police, 78th Fraser Highlanders, Peel Regional Police and Windsor Police. Also Pipe Sergeant with the Windsor Police during their 4 top 5 finishes at the World's in Grade 2.

A PPBSO and MWPBA adjudicator. Founder of the Northern Michigan School of Piping.

Stephen is a member of the Celtic Folk group “Glengarry Road” and the Irish folk/rock band “Wild Sully’s”.

Past 8 years as the Bagpipe Professional at Henderson Imports in Traverse City, Michigan. Stephen was raised in the Detroit area, with strong family ties to Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, and now lives with his family in Manistee, Michigan.

Tad Myers
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full   Full   Tad Myers took up the pipes in 1989 after several years as a professional musician. In 1997, Tad won the MWPBA grade 2 light music and the grade 2 piobaireachd Champion Supreme awards.

In 1998, Tad won the MWPBA grade 1 Champion Supreme title and the Senior Piobaireachd title. That same year Tad earned the Senior Piping Certificate from The College of Piping in Prince Edward Island, Canada.

Tad splits his time between running the Twin Cities Metro Pipe Band and playing with the Greater Midwest Pipe Band in Battle Creek, Michigan.

Tom Ogilvy
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full Full  

Tom started lessons in 1963 under the instruction of Nora J. McKay, an award-winning piper (and dancer). In 1964 he began solo contests and playing with the Flint Scottish Pipe Band, competing throughout Michigan, the Midwest, US and Ontario. Tom was fairly accomplished during his solo career and performed at Expo 87 Montreal, US Capitol Steps and Gettysburg, and joined Midlothian (Chicago) Pipe Band in the early 80’s.  Midlothian were quite competitive, winning several Champion Supreme Awards and taking sixth at the World Championship at Glasgow Green and taking a first in Edinburgh and several placements in California. 

Tom retired from solos and started playing for highland dance competitions throughout the US where he met his wife and best friend, Beth.

Tom is now Pipe Major of the Springfield Illinois St Andrew’s Pipe Band and instructs several successful solo competitors. The Band has won awards from Florida to Ontario, plus the Midwest US Championship.

Tom has been judging solos and bands since 1983.

Matt Pantaleoni
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Associate   Full ✓ 

In addition to competing at the highest level across North America, Matt is one of a handful of American pipers who travel to Scotland each summer to compete against the world’s top players.

After a successful run in the top amateur solo competitions in North America, including back to back wins at the U.S. Piping Foundation amateur championship in 2001 and 2002, Matt was upgraded to the Professional competition-grade in the U.S. in 2003 and currently competes in the ‘B’ Grade light music and Silver Medal “piobaireachd” (the classical music of the Great Highland Bagpipe) competitions at two premier Scottish solo competitions each year that draw the top pipers from around the world.

He has won numerous prizes and awards both in North America and in Scotland.

Ian Swinton

Full Full   Ian Swinton started Midlothian Pipe Band as a Grade 4 band in 1975 after moving to the United States from Uddingston, Scotland, in 1968. In Scotland he was a member of the Rutherglen Pipe Band.
 
He immediately established a teaching program in the Midlothian area of Chicago, and gradually built the talent in the band to the point where, in the 1970s, it became and remained a pre-eminent band in the United States’ Midwest. Under Ian's leadership, the band rose to Grade 1 status in 1985, and remained at the top grade for several years before settling back to Grade 2.
 
Ian retired from competitive play in 2008 after 34 years as Pipe Major of Midlothian Pipe Band.

Tom Weithers
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full Full

Tom started piping at 15 and joined the Midlothian Scottish Pipe Band in Chicago in 1979. He was made Pipe Sergeant in 1982 when the band was promoted to Grade 2. He held that position for over 20 years while the band competed successfully across the United States, in Ontario, and in Scotland in Grade 2 and Grade 1.

Tom has been an Adjudicator on the MWPBA panel for over 35 years. Since he retired from active competition in 2002 he has been active as a piping and ensemble adjudicator.

He is currently both Chairman of the Music Board for the MWPBA and Chairman of the Music Committee of the Alliance of North American Pipe Band Associations (ANAPBA).

Tom is a member of the Piobaireachd Society.

Bentley Wall
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full Full

Bentley has played with The North Cost Pipe Band from Cleveland, Ohio, since 1992, and as Pipe Major since 2002. The Band has received many accolades including 7th in the World Pipe Band Championships in Grade 3 in 2019 and 7th in Grade 2 in 2003. North Coast boasts competitive bands in Grades 2, 3, 4, and 5.

Bentley played in Grade 1 bands 78th Fraser Highlanders (Ontario, Canada) from (2008-2015) and Toronto Police Grade 1 (2006-2007). Other previous bands of note include Windsor Police Grade 2 (Ontario) and Clan Moffat Grade 2 (Ohio).

Tristan Wilson
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full   Full  

Tristan started piping when he turned 9 years old as a third generation member of the Kansas City St. Andrew Pipes & Drums. His most consistent and influential instruction came from P/M Jim Higgins, P/M Angus MacDonald MBE, P/S Jake Watson, Lindsay Kirkwood, Jimmy McIntosh MBE, Alasdair Gillies, and Andrew Wright.

Tristan strongly focused on his competitive solo career as an amateur. His notable solo accolades include 1st places at the George Sheriff Memorial and United States Piping Foundation competitions. He also holds a unique distinction of being placed in the top 5 of all Major US Pipe Band Associations Grade 1 solo Champion Supreme standings simultaneously. Throughout this time, he was involved in the Grade 3 and, later, Grade 2 Kansas City St. Andrew Pipes & Drums which holds an unprecedented streak of aggregate first places in piping for nearly 7 years in all contests played including the World Pipe Band Championships.

Tristan is currently the Pipe Major of the Grade 2 Midlothian Pipe Band, and was previously Pipe Sergeant of the Grade 1 City of Chicago Pipe Band. 


 

Current Drumming Judges

Drumming Judge

Qualification  

Biography

Band

Ensemble

Solo

Chris Barr
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full

 

Full

Chris started his drumming career at the tender age of 5 with his father, Ted Barr. With his father's guidance and instruction, he progressed to his first Grade 1 band, the Metro Police Pipe Band, at 12 years of age. This was his first experience playing under the legendary Drew Duthart.

Five years later, Chris played under his father again with the City of Detroit Pipe Band in Grade 2. They went on to place 2nd in drumming at the 1996 World Pipe Band Championships. Upon his father's leave of absence, he went back to Grade 1 for the next 5 years with the Toronto Police Pipe Band, drumming under Alan Savage.

The opportunity to lead his own drum corps came in the years 2003-2004 with the North Coast Pipe Band. With his brother Ryan as his right hand man, they accomplished great success winning the 2004 North American Championships in Grade 2. In 2005, Chris joined the Grade 2 Windsor Police Pipe Band under Michael Crawley.  That year, they won the North American Championships and placed 3rd at the World Pipe Band Championships. He continued with the band in 2006 as it successfully moved into Grade 1.

From 2007-2009, Chris once again played under Drew Duthart with the notoriously famous 78th Fraser Highlanders, led by Bill Livingstone. This amazing experience allowed him the opportunity to win a Grade 1 Worlds Drum Corps title at the 2007 Worlds Pipe Band Championships, with the entire band placing 4th overall.

Chris is currently back playing with the 78th Fraser Highlanders.

Ryan Barr
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full

 

Full

Ryan started playing the snare drum at the age of six with his father, Ted Barr, as his first teacher. By the age of eleven he was playing in the Grade One Metropolitan Police Pipe Band, under the leadership of Drew Duthart. Several years later his father started his own drum corps in the Grade Two band, City of Detroit. Ryan joined the City of Detroit and was a member when they won second place in drumming at the World Pipe Band Championships in 1994. 

After his father retired from pipe bands, Ryan returned to Grade One, playing in the Toronto Police Pipe Band .

Beginning with the 2003 season Ryan joined his brother Chris as part of the Grade Two North Coast Pipe Band’s drum corps and later played with the Grade Two Windsor Police Pipe Band, which won every contest, except the World’s where they took third place. The band moved to Grade One in 2006, where they enjoyed a successful season,
winning the Saturday contest in Pleasanton, California.

In 2007 Ryan returned to playing under the direction of Drew Duthart in the Grade One 78th Fraser Highlanders. That year the band placed fourth at the World’s and the drum corps won the “World Drum Corps” Title.

In 2010 Ryan decided to return to play with his brother in the Grade Two and later Grade One City of Chicago Pipe Band, where his brother served as Drum Sergeant. During the 2013 season Ryan played with the successful Grade One band Dowco Triumph Street.

Ryan is currently back playing with the 78th Fraser Highlanders.

Jim Enright, Jr.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full

Full

Jim Enright has been playing in pipe bands for almost 40 years, first starting with his mother and father, Jim Sr., in the Shannon Rovers Pipe Band. Jim then joined the Midlothian Scottish Pipe Band from 1987 until 2009, playing in contests all over North America and several trips to the world championships.
 
Jim joined the Grade 1 City of Chicago Pipe Band in 2011. In 2013, he joined the Chicago Celtic Pipe Band (a band his late father had started) to play as a registered instructor while also playing with the Grade 2 Greater Midwest Pipe Band from 2014 to 2019. As of 2022, Jim is back playing with the Midlothian Scottish Pipe Band in Grade 2.
 
Jim competed in the solo circuit from grades 4 through the open level.
 
His many influences would be his late father Jim Sr.; The Balmoral School of Piping and Drumming where he studied under Alex Duthart, Bert Barr, and Hugh Cameron; Jim Sim, Ian Swinton and Keith McDonald for many years in Midlothian; plus Chris and Ryan Barr.

David Hickling
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full

 

Full

David Hickling has been playing the snare drum for over thirty years. The major influences on his playing are Chris, Ryan, and Teddy Barr. David has played with Flint Scottish, City of Detroit, Toronto Police, Windsor Police, and the City of Chicago.

A highlight in David’s pipe band career was winning the North American Grade One Best Drum Corps’ Title at Maxville, Ontario with the City of Chicago Pipe Band.

David graduated from medical school in 2014 and owns a private practice outside of metro Detroit.

Andrew Hoinacki
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Full  Full 
Andrew Hoinacki started drumming at age 6 in the Midlothian Junior Pipe Band where he learned tenor and bass from James I. Sim and snare from James S. Sim. After serving as the youth band’s bass drummer, he was promoted at age 13 to the Midlothian Scottish Pipe Band where he played snare for several formative seasons. Since then he has been active playing in and leading upper-grade bands including Chicago Caledonian in Grade 2, Los Angeles Scots in Grade 1, and Coyne Memorial in Grade 2. Andrew is currently the Lead Drummer of the City of Chicago Pipe Band with corps in Grade 2 and Grade 4 as well as a youth education program.
 
Andrew’s solo accolades at the Open/Professional grade level include United States Champion, Midwest Pipe Band Association Champion Supreme and Western United States Pipe Band Association Champion Supreme.
 
He has served as an active adjudicator of drumming and ensemble for over two decades. He is currently accredited as a full judge on the Midwest Pipe Band Association panel and previously held accreditation from the Western United States Pipe Band Association panel while living in that jurisdiction. Andrew also serves on the MWPBA Music Board overseeing competitive standards of bands and soloists in the region as well as judging appointments. 

Glenn Kvidahl
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full Full  

Jim Sim
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Full Full

Jim Sim started drumming lessons with his father at the age of 8. He worked his way up the solo ranks and eventually was placed in the Open. His early influences in drumming were from his father and John Kirkwood Sr. from St. Catharines, Ontario.

In 1975, along with Pipe Major Ian Swinton, the new Midlothian Scottish Pipe Band was formed. In 1985 the band was promoted to Grade 1 which achieved one of the band’s goals which was to go from Grade 4 to Grade 1 in ten years using mostly players taught by Ian and Jim. Midlothian won many titles several times including the U.S. Open Championship, the North American Championship, and several placings in the top 6 at the World Championships.

Jim retired from active playing after the 2009 season to devote more time to teaching and judging. Jim has taught many young players who have gone on to win many contests of their own as well as play with many of the bands in North America.

He is currently a Full Adjudicator and President of the MidWest Pipe Band Association.