Retirement Open House for Dr. James Sawyer at EKHS | Arts & Culture
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Kentwood Band and Orchestra Boosters are hosting a retirement open house for Dr. James Sawyer. The open house will be held on Thursday, June 9th, from 7:00pm-9:00pm in the main cafeteria at East Kentwood High School. Please join us in celebrating his career as a music educator.
Dr. James Sawyer is retiring at the end of the 2015-2016 school year. He has been a teacher at East Kentwood High School for the past 15 years co-directing the Falcon Marching Band, four concert bands and two jazz ensembles. Before coming to Kentwood, he was a teacher and administrator in Grand Rapids Public Schools. After growing up on the south side of Chicago, Dr. Sawyer went on to earn degrees from VanderCook College of Music, the University of Michigan School of Music and a Doctor of Music Education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He has performed professionally with many famous artists including Bob Hope, The Temptations, The Lawrence Welk All-Stars, The Chi-lites, and The Manhattans.
You can hear him playing his trumpet in Western Michigan with Grand Rapids Jazz Orchestra, the Truth in Jazz Orchestra from Muskegon, and the Holland Jazz Orchestra. He serves as VP for Jazz Activities of MSBOA District 10 and is Past-Education Committee Chair for the West Michigan Jazz Society. Last summer he toured France and Italy with the high school Blue Lake International Jazz Ensemble.
He resides in Kentwood with his wife Dr. Charsie Sawyer, who recently retired as Voice Area Chair and Professor of Music at Calvin College.
Photo courtesy of swobodapics.com.