Over the past year, the National Headquarters has faced a number of changes due to the growth and development of the Fraternity and its programs.
Lyrecrest has been buzzing with activity from an increased number of Chapter Retreats, a new recycling program, a growing Sinfonia Store, sponsorship and support of DRUMS on the OHIO, an increased number of Mills Music Missions, higher visitor traffic, and growing National Partner Relations. These changes have led to some recent additions and changes to the National Staff.
Austin T. Durflinger
Fraternity Services, Planning, and Advancement
Brother Durflinger has been promoted to the position of Executive Administrator for Fraternity Services, Planning, and Advancement, effective September 28, 2018. Austin joined the National Staff in June 2016 and had served in the role of Fraternity Services Administrator for the past two years. In his new role, Austin will report to Executive Director Ed Klint and will assist with Fraternity Administration, focusing on process administration, short-term and long-term planning, and support of the Sinfonia Educational Foundation. In his tenure as Fraternity Services Administrator, Brother Durflinger has provided support to countless Brothers. He has contributed to the development of our National Partnership programs, supported the Chapter Retreat Program at Lyrecrest, assisted in the testing, implementation and support of the Probationary Member Registration tool, served as an advocate and support resource for our GINsystem implementations, and has made many contributions to the improvements in products and merchandise offered through the Sinfonia Store.
Brian M. Stratton
Brother Stratton joined the National Staff in April 2018, as our new Director of Musical Activities. In his new role, Brian is responsible for the planning and promotion of musical programs for the National Fraternity. This includes outreach to our collegiate chapters, working with local music directors to enhance the quality of the chapter music programs, promoting improvements in the Fraternity’s approach to programs devoted to American Music, assisting President Lichtenberg with his efforts to expand and promote the Mills Music Mission and other selected philanthropic efforts, and development of our music advocacy programs. Brother Stratton has served the Fraternity as a Collegiate Province Representative, Governor of Province 14 in Louisiana, and National Vice President, and has frequently served as Director of our Men of Song Chorus at National events. Brother Stratton is also a Signature Sinfonian and a National Honorary Member.
Tanner C. Thurman
Brother Thurman joined the National Staff in April 2018, as Associate Director of Communications for Video, Audio and Digital Media. Brother Thurman reports to Director of Communications Eric Ardell Smith. Before joining the National Staff, Brother Thurman frequently served in an advisory capacity for recording and documenting Fraternity events. He assisted in the audio and video recording of many of our Leadership Institute programs, including the Men of Song Concerts. Brother Thurman also developed and engineered the Fraternity’s live streaming program, including live streams of the Men of Song Chorus concert for Leadership Institute 2016 and 2017, our live stream of the National Founder’s Day Ceremony from Lyrecrest in October 2017. Brother Thurman assists Brother Smith with video and audio communications and supports the Fraternity’s expanding digital media platforms. Brother Thurman has been instrumental in the Fraternity’s launch of Snapchat and was a key contributor to Sinfonia’s recent awareness and outreach efforts for National Suicide Prevention Week.
Benjamin E. Hutchison
Brother Hutchison joins our National Staff as our newest Fraternity Services Administrator, replacing Brother Durflinger in that role. Brother Hutchison completed a three-year term as the Fraternity’s National Collegiate Representative at our 56th National Convention this July in New Orleans. During his tenure as NCR, “Hutch” frequently served as a “Booth Ambassador” at several of our National Partnership Events and communicated with many chapters and collegiate Brothers about Fraternity policies, programs, and services. Brother Hutchison’s experience at the National level and his previous involvement with the National Staff make him uniquely qualified to assume the duties of the Fraternity Services Administrator. In that role, Brother Hutchison becomes the primary contact at Lyrecrest for support and assistance with Fraternity tools and services. Ben becomes our fourth Fraternity Services Administrator since the creation of the role in 2013, following Brothers Sean Leno, Eric Ardell Smith, and Austin Durflinger.