Mission Statement

The Lakewood Ranch Wind Ensemble is a premiere ensemble dedicated to serving the community by providing exposure to the finest wind ensemble literature performed at a professional level.  We offer concerts to share the enjoyment of high-quality music-making as well as to inspire young musicians to pursue lifelong engagement with music.

Humble Beginnings

​The Lakewood Ranch Wind Ensemble had a humble beginning. Founder Joe Miller, with help from others, met with 33 musicians for a two-hour reading session at Manatee High School Band Room. The session was exciting! The musicians were excited, and, with the help of John Cooley, personnel manager, and Diane Nichols, clarinetist, a schedule was developed that reflected the availability of the musicians. Currently, the musicians in the LRWE perform in no less than fourteen other performing groups throughout the concert season.

The Future Looks Bright

Our premier concert was performed on Sunday, November 24, 2019, at Our Lady of the Angels Church Hall in Lakewood Ranch. With all the enthusiasm generated from our premier concert, our goal now is to perform three concerts during the season from November through May of each year.  

Joe Miller, Music Director
Joe in tux.jpg

Joseph “Joe” Miller’s performance career began at age 12, playing first chair solo cornet in his father’s concert band in Mechanicville, N. Y. Mr. Miller earned a BS in Mathematics and Physics from Siena College, a Master’s in Operations Research from Union College, and a Master’s in Educational Administration from The College of St. Rose. He taught Physics and Chemistry at Mechanicville High School, became a Scientific Applications Programmer and Systems Analyst at General Electric, and worked on his PhD in Systems Engineering at Union College, where he became an Adjunct Associate Professor of Operations Research and Statistics.


Mr. Miller switched careers in 1975 and served as a junior high and high school music educator and band director. In 1994, he founded and was music director of the Capital Region Wind Ensemble, comprised of the finest performing and teaching musicians in the Albany, N. Y. region. Over the years, Mr. Miller has performed with many concert bands, big bands, symphony orchestras, pit orchestras, and show bands. Mr. Miller relocated to Venice, Florida in 2005. He has performed with the Venice Symphony, the Anna Maria Island Community Chorus and Orchestra, and several jazz groups, including the Savory Swing Band, Skip Conkling’s Dixie Mix, and numerous other organizations.  He also has soloed with Dick Hyman and the VSO.