Meet The Team

For 66 years Gemeinhardt has been dedicated to the flutist’s journey. Our experienced Gemeinhardt staff and artisans have spent their lives devoted to making and providing quality instruments, and are proud to have contributed to your music making experience.

Music… Passion… Life…

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David Pirtle

President
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Jennifer Baunoch

Executive Vice President & COO

Jennifer Baunoch

Executive Vice President & COO

I grew up in a musical family, which meant the question for me was not “do you want to play an instrument?” but rather, “what instrument do you want to play?” In my mind there was never a question; the flute was it! I began playing for church audiences when I was 10. At the age of 13 a gentleman attending our church who also happened to be a VP at a large musical instrument manufacturer, gave me my first open-hole flute. In high school I won several talent awards, was a drum major, and performed at Carnegie Hall. I also attended DePaul University as a performance major. Upon returning home to Elkhart, IN, my high school band director called and asked me if I was interested in a flute testing job for a local manufacturer. The rest is history. My fortune is to have gained positions both at the manufacturing and corporate levels throughout my 20 year career. It is amazing to me that I have been able to have a life in music in a way I never imagined. I hope I am truly able to make a difference in the world of music.

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Sharon Knepp

Internal Sales Coordinator

Sharon Knepp

Internal Sales Coordinator

Sharon Knepp is currently an Internal Sales Coordinator with 33 years of customer service, sales, manufacturing, production coordinator and shipping experience. Sharon’s education in the music industry was provided by on the job training. Sharon’s years in the musical industry has been with Gemeinhardt Musical Instruments. Sharon enjoys outdoor activities, walking her dog, biking and golfing.

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John Goebel

CFO

John Goebel

CFO

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Ashlee Townsend

Trade Show Coordinator

Ashlee Townsend

Trade Show Coordinator

Gemeinhardt has been part of my entire life! I have known Gemeinhardt ever since I could walk! It is the company where my Dad, grandma, aunt and uncle have always worked. I can remember going there when I was just a little girl. Little did I know I would one day work here! I played a Gemeinhardt flute for several years in school. I can remember when one of my friends was going to competition and her flute broke (another brand), she came and borrowed one from me.

I finished high school going on to IUPUI in Indianapolis and finishing up at Indiana University South Bend and IVY Tech. As part of my school I did an internship here at Gemeinhardt and then started working with the marketing, customer service and show coordinating departments.

I have always wanted to work in the music industry. I am grateful to Gemeinhardt for the opportunity to stay connected to music.

As I begin my family, my son too will know Gemeinhardt from an early age and I am excited to be part of the team.

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Alissa Penland

Customer Service / Marketing

Alissa Penland

Customer Service

Do I play an instrument? Well of course! Ever since I was little I always wanted to play the violin. The Devil went down to Georgia was actually my inspiration. Once I entered middle school I joined the orchestra and playing my violin was one of my favorite things to do once I got home from school, or after cross country and track practice. As much as I loved being a part of a very musical family, I favored running. I was a part of the varsity teams every year, and made it to the state finals. Not only did I suceed as an athlete but I came to know a different kind of family. I also learned that I can do anything I set my mind to. I have had several different types of jobs after graduating high school, but receiving a spot on the Gemeinhardt team has been the most influential so far. It is my goal to help further Gemeinhardt's aspirations in the music world.

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Kelli Gohn

Production Manager

Kelli Gohn

Production Manager / Shipping Coordinator

I have been employed at Gemeinhardt for 18yrs. I oversee the production process, scheduling and shipping.

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David Siekman

Engineer

David Siekman

Engineer

I have been associated with Gemeinhardt at different levels for over 20 years. During this time we have worked together at improving tooling, methods, and products. With experience in music, medical, and other industries, we bring a new insight into making musical instruments.

My son plays the saxophone and the flute, which gives me a renewed passion to make the instrument player's experience as enjoyable as possible.

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Tom Lacy

Master Craftsman

Tom Lacy

Master Craftsman

Tom has 43 years of experience working on flutes. He has worked for most of the major flute manufacturers in the USA. For 14 years he was self-employed making and repairing flutes. He has been married for 36 years and has a daughter and 2 grandchildren.

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Jim Hart

Regional Sales Manager

Jim Hart

Regional Sales Manager

In 1981 Jim began managing his family music retail operation in Northern California. For the past 19 years he has worked as a factory representative and of that, the past 9 years with Gemeinhardt Musical Instruments. Jim is passionate about dealer service and in his spare time is an active drummer. Jim also co-founded HartSong Ranch Animal Rescue with his wife Kathy. If you have any questions or are interested in Gemeinhardt Musical Instruments, please feel free to contact Jim.

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Ali Ryerson

Artist In Residence/Sales Manager

Ali Ryerson

Artist In Residence and Flute Specialist Sales Manager

I grew up in a musical family in a small town about 40 miles outside of the city where I was born, New York City. My father, Art Ryerson, was a renowned jazz guitarist who got his start with the Paul Whiteman Orchestra, and later became one of the first-call studio players in NYC for five decades, recording with everyone from Louis Armstrong to Charlie Parker to Frank Sinatra. One might say he set the musical bar rather high for my three older brothers and me! My brothers and I first learned to play piano. Then, when my brothers became interested in playing trumpet and trombone, I asked if I could play the flute. When my parents saw how much I loved it, they bought me my first Gemeinhardt. That was over 50 years ago. I never dreamt that one day I’d be playing flutes I actually helped design for Gemeinhardt some fifty years later! (The Ali Ryerson Autograph Series) With all the amazing experiences my musical career has brought me, including countless international tours, numerous recordings on major jazz labels, performances with many of my musical heroes, playing historic venues like Carnegie Hall and The Kennedy Center, one of the greatest joys of my life has been coming home to my Gemeinhardt family. I know my father would have been very proud to know I’m a part of the Gemeinhardt Team…and that I still practice the flute, go jogging, and take spin classes almost every day!

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Bill Peterson

National Sales Manager

Bill Peterson

National Sales Manager

As a lifelong musician, I've always enjoyed working with instrument manufacturers and retailers. Since receiving my Bachelor's degree in Accounting from Rider College in NJ in 1989, I've worked continuously as a District Sales Manager in the music industry, representing Fender, KMC, Getzen and Gemeinhardt.

As National Sales Manager for Gemeinhardt, my goal is to grow our business with our dealer partners through our District Managers.

Gemeinhardt is providing outstanding value to our dealer partners, and we’re committed to giving the best service in the business. Gemeinhardt is driven by people who share a passion for manufacturing, music and business. I’m thrilled to be a part of Gemeinhardt!

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Lonnie Stack

Regional Sales Manager

Lonnie Stack

Regional Sales Manager

Based out of Southwest Florida, Lonnie worked for years as a touring drummer and audio engineer. His father was an independent sales rep of 45 years based in Chicago

selling MI and Pro Audio. As a 14­-year- ­old, Lonnie felt it was a real education to tag along with dealers to listen to their conversations on business and life. In 1990, his father

offered Lonnie an opportunity to join him as a rep in his firm, which he eagerly accepted. Lonnie joined The Marketeers in 2016.

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Jason O’Keefe

Sales Representative

Jason O’Keefe

Sales Representative

Jason O’Keefe is an accomplished sales management professional with over 16 years of experience. He spent the majority of those years with Pearl Corporation.

Jason is a talented drummer who has performed with notable jazz groups in the Northwest. We are very excited, and anticipate you will be pleased at the service

Jason will provide as he represents Gemeinhardt in a way which is in line with our core values as we support our dealers and continue to strengthen those relationships.

We have several new elements of our business and product lines to introduce to you this fall and we are confident it will be exciting to you and your customers.

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Dr. Evan Pettit

Sales Representative

Dr. Evan Pettit

Sales Representative

Dr. Evan Pettit holds a DMA from the University of Oklahoma in Double Bass Performance. For his document, Evan researched stretches and exercises to

prolong playing life of double bassists. He received his Master’s Degree from the University of Iowa and a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Wisconsin-

Platteville. Evan has enjoyed playing music for over 20 years in many genres from classical to jazz to rock. He recently worked in retail for Edmond Music in the

Oklahoma City metro as band and orchestra manager. We are very excited, and anticipate you will be pleased at the service the Evan will

provide as he represents Gemeinhardt in a way which is in line with our core values as we support our dealers and continue to strengthen those relationships.

We have several new elements of our business and product lines to introduce to you this fall and we are confident it will be exciting to you and your customers.