For nearly 50 years, Drum Corps International, Marching Music’s Major League™, has been the world leader in producing and promoting competitive events for the world’s premier marching music ensembles for student musicians and performers. As we look ahead to the next generation of participants in our programs, we do so with the increased awareness that we must continue to work diligently and tirelessly to advance representation within drum corps and related activities while using our platform to foster an even more inclusive environment.

Anchoring to our core value—Mutual Care and Respect: treating all with dignity, courtesy, attention and appreciation—we must continually evolve to reflect the unique attributes and needs of our diverse community of performers, educators, support staff members and leaders.

This week the voting members of the Drum Corps International collective reaffirmed their commitment to develop new opportunities to expand and share the greatest stage in marching music through thoughtful and deliberate collaboration. Today, we are taking a necessary step, by realigning our “IN STEP: Women in DCI” committee to now focus on our responsibility to more broadly foster and promote diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). This committee will support the participation of Women, Black people and People of Color, and people identifying as LBGTQ+ in all facets of DCI, from membership to staff to leadership.

Our work will highlight the accomplishments and participation of diverse communities throughout DCI, provide DEI resources for corps, identify and tackle barriers to participation and leadership, assist in proactively addressing current social issues, and encourage policy development consistent with the core values of DCI.

Achieving significant progress will be possible through the work and input of our diverse IN STEP committee members and the DEI committees of each of the participating organizations. We will share more about the program and members of IN STEP in the coming weeks.

We know we have more work to do in this space and this commitment is our first step to move forward, IN STEP, together.