Lieutenant Commander Bruce A. McDonald reported for duty as Director of the United States Naval Academy Band in October of 2012. Previously, he had served as Director, U.S. Fleet Forces Band in Norfolk, VA, Fleet Bandmaster of both the Pacific Fleet Band in Pearl Harbor, HI and SIXTH Fleet Band in Naples, Italy, Associate Conductor of the United States Navy Band in Washington, DC, and as Music Program Liaison Officer to the Chief of Information, also in Washington, DC.
LCDR McDonald enlisted in the Navy in 1989 as a trombonist with the U.S. Naval Academy Band in Annapolis, Maryland. There, he performed with the "Electric Brigade" Top 40 Ensemble, the Brass Quintet, and as principal trombonist with the Wind Ensemble. After promotion to Chief Petty Officer in 1997, he transferred to the U.S. Navy School of Music in Little Creek, Virginia, where he graduated first in his class from both the Ceremonial Conductor/Drum Major and the Enlisted Bandleader/Assistant Director courses. He then transferred to the Atlantic Fleet Band in Norfolk, Virginia, where he was the ceremonial band director and assistant concert band conductor prior to his commissioning in October 2000 and subsequent assignment to the U.S. Navy Band.
LCDR McDonald holds a master's degree in instrumental conducting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.