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Youth Education in the Arts (YEA!) today announced that The Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps will begin operating as an independent non-for-profit organization with a newly constituted Board of Directors, bylaws and governance structure, beginning March 31, 2020. YEA! will continue to operate USBands, a program focused on delivering services to the scholastic band community.

After March 31, the Cadets and USBands, will operate as separate entities with a well-defined ongoing business relationship, allowing each organization to focus on meeting the needs of their constituencies.

In announcing the transition of the organization, Doug Rutherford, chairman of the board of YEA! said, “Creating this plan for a new beginning has been a team effort that included donors, sponsors, DCI and great friends in the marching band and drum corps community. Through the hard work of so many people over the years, thousands upon thousands of young people have grown and matured through YEA! programs. The Cadets and USBands have withstood the test of time and continue to deliver on the mission to create magnificent human beings through participation in the performing arts.”

Rutherford said: “It’s no secret that YEA! has had a challenging several year stretch. We have struggled to efficiently deliver both a world class performing arts program, and a multi-state marching band program.  The programs serve the same mission, but with very different stakeholder communities and business models.”

After extensive consultation with lawyers, accountants, and specialists in non-for-profit organizations with financial challenges like those facing YEA!, the Board of Directors has selected the pathway to an independent Cadets and USBands to ensure a bright future for both programs. This approach includes a deep commitment by both organizations to a strict budget that will allow for a great experience for program participants, an enjoyable volunteer experience, and for delivery of programs that will encourage the strong support of parents, educators, alumni, and fans.

“Throughout this entire process, we have been in constant contact with the leadership of Drum Corps International which has been a strong partner in helping us solidify our plan,” added Rutherford.

In a statement, DCI noted that it “recognizes the ongoing extraordinary effort of all parties involved with YEA! and the Cadets to ensure a successful future for both USBands and the Cadets. DCI continues to serve in a supportive role as appropriate as the Cadets chart a new course for themselves. We look forward to welcoming the performers, staff and volunteers of the Cadets to the 2020 DCI Tour.”

“We want the world to know The Cadets are alive and well as they prepare for their 86th season while USBands is in a position to grow and prosper as a leader in the scholastic music activity,” noted Rutherford. “There are a good number of exciting announcements and new projects coming separately from The Cadets and USBands in the next several weeks. We encourage everyone to follow along at and and their respective social media outlets for the latest news. The year 2020 marks the next generation for these amazing youth organizations and we are all eager to see what the year has in store for us all!”


The Cadets Brass Staff will host an informational webinar for anyone and everyone interested this Wednesday, November 3, at 7PM EST.

Register Now


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