Inducted in 1996
Charles Carter is one of the most widely known names in the field of school band literature. But, to the thousands of students who have known him at Florida State University, he is our beloved "Charlie!" Born in Ponca City, Oklahoma in 1926, he grew up in Worthington, Ohio, where he began his life-long affair with music. He entered Ohio State University in 1944, but left to serve in the Army shortly thereafter. He completed the bachelor's degree at Ohio State University in 1950, and entered the Eastman School of Music in 1951, where he completed the Master's Degree in Composition. In 1953 Manley Whitcomb invited Charlie to come to Tallahassee with him to help him build a marching band at the relatively unknown Florida State University.
Charlie's tenure at Florida State University is legendary for its productivity, musical monuments, and traditions. For over forty years Charlie produced exciting, fresh, creative, challenging arrangements for the Marching Chiefs. Most of the musical traditions of the Chiefs, and indeed the University, can be traced to Charlie's pen. But he also used those years to create compositions for the school band which have become "standards" in the repertoire. Internationally recognized, he now has well over 30 original works for band which have been published, as well as thousands of arrangements which he has written for the Marching Chiefs and numerous other bands around the world.
Charlie is the recipient of many awards including the Distinguished Service to Music Medal, presented by Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, the Distinguished Service Medal awarded by the American Society of Composers and Performers (ASCAP), and the Outstanding Contributions to Band award presented by Phi Beta Mu, National Honorary Band Directors Fraternity. But we who know Charlie best, know that the best "rewards" for him are the thousands of students who play his music every year.