Michael Leckrone is the director of the marching band and director of bands at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A native of Indiana, Leckrone received his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from Butler University in Indianapolis and received a PhD from Indiana University.
Before coming to Wisconsin he taught at his alma mater, where he developed one of the finest marching bands in the Midwest. Today, Leckrone is in constant demand as a clinician, guest conductor and adjudicator for concert and marching bands throughout the United States and Canada. His experience also includes considerable professional work as an arranger, composer and performer.
Leckrone holds memberships in numerous professional organizations, as well as honorary fraternities such as Kappa Kappa Psi, Phi Mu Alpha, Phi Kappa Lambda, Phi Kappa Phi, and Phi Beta Mu. He is a 25-year member of ASCAP and has been elected to the American Bandmasters Association.
In 1970 Leckrone was cited as an "Outstanding Educator of America" by the Outstanding Americans Foundation. In 1973 he was awarded the "Outstanding Bandmaster Award" by the Wisconsin Chapter of Phi Beta Mu, and in 1986 was presented with a Citation of Excellence by the National Band Association.
Leckrone is a recipient of the "Pat O'Dea Award," the "Blue Line Club Distinguished Service
Award," the "Badger Basketball Boosters Distinguished Service Award," the UW Alumni Club's "Distinguished Faculty Award," and the Wisconsin Newspaper Writers "Special Edition Award."
Leckrone was recently inducted into the Wisconsin Hockey Hall of Fame and the Wisconsin Football Hall of Fame. He has been commissioned a "Kentucky Colonel" by the governor of Kentucky, named a "Badger Legend" by the governor of Wisconsin and named one of 10 Madison Musical Legends by "Madison Magazine." He was also honored with an appointment to the prestigious "John Bascom Professorship" by the University of Wisconsin.
Leckrone was designated one of the Wisconsin State Journal's "Sesquicentennial People of Note" and was selected an honorary member of the National "W" Club. In 2007, he was presented with a "Lifetime Achievement Award" by the Wisconsin Foundation for School Music. This was only the second time this preeminent award had been conferred.
Leckrone has composed or arranged music for numerous high school and university bands. Over 200 of his arrangements and compositions for marching band and concert band have been published. He is the author of two texts for marching band directors, a handbook for band arranging, and a text about popular music in the United States. Leckrone is now in his 41st year as director of the Wisconsin bands.
The Wisconsin Historical Society celebrated the lifetime achievement of Professor Michael Leckrone, along with three other individuals with Wisconsin ties, during the Fifth Annual History Makers Gala in Milwaukee in May 2010. Leckrone received The Spencer Tracy Award for Distinction in the Performing Arts.