Donnie Hull

Director of Bands, Symphonic Winds, Haltom Jazz

Donnie is entering his tenth year of teaching at Haltom High School. He has a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Houston. Prior to his tenure at Haltom, Donnie taught in Judson ISD in San Antonio, Texas. His primary mentors include Eddie Green, Greg Hull, Tom Bennett, and David Bertman.

Donnie’s Drum Corps International experience includes marching with The Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps from 1999 – 2002. In 2002, Donnie was the Brass Sergeant and joined the teaching staff in 2003 – 2009 as the Associate Brass Caption Head. He has been a part of the Santa Clara Vanguard Visual staff since 2014.

Donnie is a member of Texas Music Educators Association and Texas Bandmasters Association.

When he is not standing in front of a band, Donnie enjoys spending time with his rescue labrador mix, Lucy.

Tony Smith

Associate Director of Bands, Symphonic Band I

Tony Smith is celebrating 20 years in Birdville ISD. He has a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from the University of North Texas.

Tony has taught as North Oaks Middle School for the last 18 years, but prior to that, he taught at Haltom High School for two years as an Assistant Band Director. Under his leadership, the NOMS band has been a state finalist in the TMEA Honor Band process in 2003, 2005, 2010, and 2012. Tony has also been recognized as the “Teacher of the Year” at NOMS in 2005 and 2010.

Tony is a member of Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, and Phi Beta Mu.

Outside of school, Tony is an avid runner and enjoys traveling with family and playing with his nephews.

Lynna Russell

Assistant Director of Bands, Symphonic Band II, AP Music Theory

Lynna is beginning her second year at Haltom High School. She has a Bachelor of Music in Music Education and Master of Music in Instrumental Wind Conducting from the University of Houston (GO COOGS!) Prior to Haltom High School, Lynna taught at Irons Junior High in Conroe, Texas.

Lynna is a member of Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, Tau Beta Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority, and Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society.

When she is not teaching, Lynna enjoys yoga and working out. However, her favorite pastime is taking her rescue labrador mix Andy on play dates with Lucy.

Casey O’Neal

Director of Percussion, Haltom High School & Haltom, North Oaks, and Watauga Middle Schools

Casey O’Neal is currently the Percussion Coordinator for the Haltom Cluster in the Birdville Independent School District.  Prior to working at Haltom, Casey was an Assistant Band Director at Kennemer Middle School and Battery Instructor for the Duncanville Independent School District.  Casey received his Bachelor of Music Education from Morehead State University where he was a member of the Drumline, Steel Band, Percussion Ensemble, Wind Symphony, and Jazz Band. 

Casey’s Drum Corps experience includes playing snare drum for the Magic Drum and Bugle Corps and Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps.  Casey also taught the snare drums and battery at Glassmen from 2009 through 2012. 

Casey is an Innovative Percussion Artist and a member of Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, and Percussive Arts Society.

In his free time, Casey enjoys spending time with his wife Gizzel, reading books, and going on adventures. 

Jazper Saldana

Front Ensemble Instructor, Percussion Private Teacher Haltom HS & Haltom, North Oaks, and Watauga Middle Schools

Originally from San Diego, California, Jazper moved to Denton, Texas in 2015 to continue pursuing his educational endeavors. He holds degrees in Percussion Performance from California State University – Long Beach and the University of North Texas. Performance credits include Pulse Percussion, RCC Indoor, Sacramento Mandarins, and the Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps.

He has taught a variety of high school/independent programs in the Southern California area as well as Texas including Westminster HS, Ayala HS, Sacramento Madarins, and Vigilantes Indoor Percussion. He is currently the Front Ensemble Instructor for Haltom High School and on the private lesson faculty for the Haltom High School and Haltom, North Oaks, and Watauga Middle Schools.

Kristen Wilkirson

Director of Color Guard & Winter Guard

Kristen Wilkirson is beginning her 7th year at Haltom High School. Ms. Wilkirson holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Louisiana State University and a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Texas at Arlington.
Ms. Wilkirson is not only the Color Guard Director, but teaches mathematics at Haltom as well. She has taught Algebra 1, Algebra 2, English 2, and Precalculus. Ms. Wilkirson has been the Color Guard Director at Haltom for the past 6 years. She gains experience from having marched with the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps, as well as helping with an independent group in past years.
When not teaching math or spinning flags, Ms. Wilkirson spends her time traveling the world or hanging out with family. She is an avid LSU fan and will be seen wearing purple and gold any chance she gets!

Gizzel Cruz-O’Neal

Color Guard & Winter Guard Choreographer/Instructor

Gizzel Cruz-O’Neal is the Color Guard Director for Byron Nelson High School in Trophy Club, TX. She is also the Colorguard Choreographer for the Haltom High School Colorguard in Haltom City, TX. She has been teaching and choreographing professionally in the DFW area since 2009. She earned her Bachelor of Science Degree with a major in Health Studies and minor in Dance at Texas Woman’s University. Her performance experience includes competing with the Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps and Black Gold Winterguard. She has served on staff at Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps, Academy Drum and Bugle Corps, Black Gold Winterguard, Bri’A Winterguard and Cypress Independent Winterguard. Throughout her career Gizzel has placed a strong emphasis on education and excellence. She has achieved a bronze medal at WGI in Independent A Finals, competed as a WGI Independent World Class Finalist and has received Distinguished Service Awards. She has helped instruct high school groups that have medaled in the North Texas Colorguard Association Circuit and that have successfully competed in finals at the UIL State Marching Band Competition. Gizzel is currently attending the College of Education at the University of North Texas and has been awarded her Post-Baccalaureate Teaching Certification in Dance. Gizzel intends to continue her education in efforts to receive her Masters Degree of Education in Teaching.