The artisans and other highly skilled individuals who choose Parsons as the means of engaging their life’s work do so because they have a great desire to be a part of something that transcends the ordinary. Once engaged, they experience a passion that comes only to those who are driven to create something of great beauty and who commit themselves to reach for perfection through the artistry of their craft. The people who design, build, and give voice to Parsons pipe organs find real satisfaction in their work, and in the process, become cherished colleagues and friends.
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Ric Parsons serves as President and Artistic Director at Parsons Pipe Organ Builders. He began his pipe organ career at a very early age and is a fourth generation organ builder. After receiving degrees in electronic and biomedical engineering technologies in 1979, he and his brother Calvin purchased the firm established by their grandfather in 1921. Ric has overseen the design and execution of each of the firm’s instruments. This has included a broad range of projects, ranging from new mechanical-action organs, to historically based restorations. In addition to 43 years of practical experience, Ric has travelled extensively throughout the US as well as to Italy and France to visit significant instruments.
Ric is a colleague member of the American Institute of Organbuilders (AIO) where he has lectured on two occasions as part of their annual educational conferences. He is a current board member and has served as Vice President, and as Secretary of the Institute. In addition, Ric is a past President of the Associated Pipe Organ Builders of America (APOBA) and has held the office of Vice President. Ric is also a contributor to the Journal of American Organbuilding and The American Organist.
Ric is married with three children, two of whom work in the family business, and fills much of his free time with his three grandchildren. He enjoys volunteering at his church and working endless hours on the business.
Cal serves as Vice President and Director of Field Services at Parsons Pipe Organ Builders. He began his pipe organ career at a very early age and is a fourth generation organ builder. Cal received his degree in electronic technology in 1979, and with his brother Richard, purchased the family business in 1979. Cal is responsible for all of the service and tuning work for the firm. He oversees many of the rebuilding projects, and maintains the organs for approximately 250 contract clients.
Calvin is a colleague member of the American Institute of Organbuilders and has served on several committees. Cal is married and has two grown children.
Duane has served as Tonal Director for Parsons since 1991. He has been responsible for scaling, voicing, and tonal finishing their instruments beginning with Opus 5. While Duane feels that voicing pipe organs is an ongoing educational process, he credits early influence on his work to collaborative and satisfying projects with organbuilder/voicer Manuel Rosales.
Duane obtained his M. M. degree in Organ Performance from The Eastman School of Music where he studied with Russell Saunders, and his B. M. degree from Ohio Wesleyan University where he studied with Robert A. Griffith. Prior to attending Ohio Wesleyan, Duane studied with Gloria Wendel in his home town of Van Wert, Ohio. Post-graduate studies were with David Craighead.
Duane currently serves as Principal Organist for Asbury First United Methodist Church, Rochester, NY, a position he has held since 1996. He has has been invited to dedicate many Parsons instruments, and has performed throughout the United States and Europe. He also had served as accompanist for various choral groups in and around Rochester, including the Rochester Oratorio Society, Madrigalia, and Concentus.
Currently a colleague member of the American Institute of Organbuilders, Duane has served as vice-president of that organization. He has served as Dean and Sub Dean of the Rochester Chapter of the American Guild of Organists. His compact disc entitled, “Celebrate!” Music for Two Trumpets and Organ, was recorded at the University of Rochester Interfaith Chapel where he served as Organist and staff member.
Peter Geise serves in various capacities at Parsons, from Tuning Foreman to New Organ Assembly and Historic Restoration. He graduated from Houghton College in 2000 with a B.Mus. in Organ Performance as a student of Dr. Judy Congdon, and from the Eastman School of Music in 2002 with a M.M. in Organ Performance as a student of Dr. Hans Davidsson. Following this he spent a year in Sweden as a student at Göteborgs Universitet. His thesis focused on the history of the Italian Baroque organ purchased by Eastman, which has since been installed at the Memorial Art Gallery in Rochester, NY. While in Sweden he worked at GOArt learning about some of the processes of historic organ building discovered during the reconstruction of a 17th century North German-style organ.
Peter is a member of the Rochester Chapter of the American Guild of Organists and American Institute of Organbuilders. Peter is currently serving as Music Minister at the Lima Presbyterian Church, Lima, NY, where he directs the adult choir as well as plays the organ for Sunday services.
David McCleary joined Parsons as a Project Manager in 2011. He is a highly skilled professional trained in areas of process architecture and elongated sales cycles with an emphasis on collaborative relationships. Dave has previously served as National Manager and Vice-President of Sales and Marketing in firms associated the commercial decorative arts industry and has extensive experience in the field of pipe organs.
Dave holds memberships in several chapters of the American Guild of Organists, and is committed to furthering the resurgence of the pipe organ as the superior liturgical musical instrument.
Matt Parsons is a Project Manager at Parsons Pipe Organ Builders. Matt has many responsibilities at Parsons from tuning and service work, re-leathering, historic restoration, and new organ building and assembly. After serving in the U S Air Force from 1998 to 2002, Matt graduated with a Bachelor’s degree from Keuka College in 2004.
Matt has been a member of the American Institute of Organbuilders since 2006 and has served on the Board and as Vice President of the organization. Matt is also active in the Rochester NY chapter of the American Guild of Organists (AGO). Matt has been on the Board since 2016 and served as Dean of the chapter in 2020. Matt is currently serving as Vice Commander of the Canandaigua American Legion Post 256. Matt, along with the involvement of the Parsons’ staff, is the Curator of Organs at the Eastman School of Music.
Matt is the proud father of a three year old German Shepherd named Dexter. Matt is engaged to a lovely lady named Jen, and a wedding is planned for the summer of 2023.
Matt has a love of music and plays the piano and saxophone. When Matt isn’t working you can find him traveling, walking his dog, tending to his gardens, watching “The Office” for the 38th time, investigating a part-time career in politics, losing weight, writing comedy, reading, or listening to his favorite band Journey.
Tim joined the Parsons team full-time in 2011 after working part-time in his late teens and early 20’s. He’s attended several AIO conferences and is excited to be the fifth generation of Parsons to be in the pipe organ industry.
Tim graduated with a degree in graphic design from Hodges University in Florida. Along with general organ building and project management, he is responsible for advertising and marketing for Parsons.
He is married with twin daughters, a son, and has a golden doodle puppy named Ginger. Tim enjoys his time with his family, coaching youth baseball, golfing, boating, fishing, playing softball and skiing.
Ellen joined Parsons Pipe Organ Builders in 1981 and has performed many tasks including tuning assistant and installation crew member. She has been the Business Manager for the past 30-some years.
Married with three grown sons, she enjoys spending her spare time with her three young grandchildren and volunteering at church.
Jay joined Parsons in 2004 as a woodworker. He has done outstanding detail work, turning turrets and wood carvings. In his spare time he likes wood carving and working with all types of wood, hunting, fishing, gardening, reading old woodworking magazines and bird watching.
Jay is married with two grown daughters, one who recently graduated University and one who was recently married.
Aaron has been working with Parsons June, 2005. He is primarily a woodworker but is also very versatile and has contributed in restorations, re-leathering, and mechanical key action projects. He is married with three young children. When he’s not playing with his kids, he is a Star Trek enthusiast, enjoys wood carving and model making. He attends a local church near his home in beautiful, historic Naples, NY.
Joe has been providing valuable talent as a Tuning Foreman since he joined the company in February 2014. Joe has an A.S. in Music and an A.S. in Music Recording Technology. He has been involved in instrumental and vocal music since the age of 5. He is married with two children and lives in Lyons, NY.
Aaron is a Tuning Foreman and organbuilder at Parsons. He joined the firm in 2013. Aaron holds a Bachelor in Organ Performance from SUNY at Buffalo and studied with Michael Burke and David Fuller. He is organist at Medina, St Mary’s Church, and a member of the American Institute of Organbuilders.
Aaron is also an avid re-enactor who regularly volunteers with his family at Old Fort Niagara, Youngstown, NY, portraying a French Royal Artillerist of the French and Indian War era. He is a member of Artillery Niagara and Campagné LeBeouff.
Bernard Talty II
Bernie Talty grew up in Victor, New York. Now residing in Canandaigua, he is a music teacher/tutor for drums and percussion, guitar, bass, violin, cello, piano, banjo, and other music related devices. He has fabrication and design background based in plastics, specifically acrylics.
He also makes fine handcrafted pizza. These, with other attributes, make him a fine addition to the Parsons team.
Bernard Talty II
Having graduated college in 2005 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Art/Graphic Design, Derek spent just over ten years as a prepress specialist at a stationary company. Then, during a two-year period as a full-time stay-at-home-daddy, Derek’s family encouraged him to pursue a career path involving his life-long passion—the pipe organ. He joined Parsons in March, 2019, as a service apprentice and is busy learning about organ tuning and servicing.
Married with three young kids, Derek enjoys spending his time with his family, making art, playing the organ, watching movies, as well as collecting and listening to music. In fact, he has over 430 discs in his organ recordings collection.
Brian joined Parsons in 2019 as a CNC Router Operator/Woodworker. Brian attended Monroe Community College for Precision Machining and has been involved with CNC routers for 10 years with a background in cutting plastics and wood. Brian enjoys his time with his family, woodworking, and the outdoors. He is married and lives in Macedon, NY with their 2 year old Golden Retriever named Gracie.
Wesley joined our team in 2021 and fits in perfectly with our Design Department. He works within Iron CAD to design new organ parts and provide detailed drawings to our woodworkers and CNC operator. Wesley loves long walks on the beach, alas, Canandaigua has limited access to beach walks. Boasting a plethora of different hair styles, he isn’t afraid to try new things and keep it fresh. He endeavors to build an off-grid homestead. Humor is lost on him. To say that he is a prolific composer and songwriter would be inaccurate, yet he maintains lofty aspirations.
Ryett was born in Canandaigua, NY in 2002. Having a military family he traveled around in his youth, spending many years in North Carolina before he made his way back to upstate New York. He is very musical, loves classical music and classic rock. He’s been playing the piano for six years. He started at Parsons in December 2022, and has been enjoying it ever since.