Dr. Josh Boyd, group director at Newnan High School, has been named 2022 Music Educator of the Year.
Boyd accepted the award Thursday at the Georgia Music Educators Association’s annual conference in Athens, where he was honored as “both an exemplary leader and an outstanding member of his community.”
“Every music educator in Georgia has gone above and beyond over the past two years due to the pandemic,” the GMEA presenters said. “(Boyd) did that and more when his school was devastated by a tornado last March. His work in rallying the community and building partnerships serves as a role model for all of us, especially in how he cares about the students first and the product second.
Boyd thanked supporters in a Facebook post and said the heroes were the students and parents of the Newnan Group.
“I am who I am because I work with group students who inspire me and challenge me to be a better person,” he wrote Thursday. “Today’s wonderful moment allowed me to have the honor of telling their story again and again. I shared the story of 130 children from groups who made a difference in our city.
Boyd acknowledged that Newnan’s group students, parents, faculty and administration have “been through a lot,” but challenged them to move forward with positivity despite adversity.
“Don’t let that be the story,” he said. “The story is that #TeamNewnan is on a mission to give hope.”
Before the conference began, Boyd recalled the response from GMEA members after the NHS Music Room – along with the hundreds of musical instruments, uniforms, sheet music, awards and memorabilia inside – was destroyed by the EF-4 tornado that tore through the city last March.
“Just hours after (the tornado) hit our city, leaving behind…destroyed instruments, shattered dreams and lost homes, the GMEA office was looking to find out how they could be used,” he wrote. . “The first instruments for the concerned students to come forward…came from the GMEA office.”
Northgate group directors Alan Armstrong and Chris Sink immediately launched a campaign in which hundreds of other GMEA members would donate instruments to students who had lost theirs. Within 48 hours, Newnan’s guard had a location and the guard and percussion members had the necessary equipment to complete their indoor seasons.
Boyd said GMEA members helped feed, clothe and equip his students in the aftermath of the storm, and wrote personal notes of encouragement in addition to fundraising and collecting donations to stock shelters. local. They also “replaced every lost horn, and more”.
“Just 30 days after the story, my students were able to perform a spring concert,” he said. “…We’re doing a band in a tent these days, but the music is still alive, and with every note we play, GMEA is with us.”
Boyd, who has lived in Newnan for more than 20 years and is a product of Coweta County Schools, has been a group principal at Newnan High School since 2019. He was a group principal at Smokey Road Middle School from 2007 to 2015 and in as group manager. at Point University from 2016 to 2018.