Neil Ruby, director of bands at Central High School in Carrollton, was named state band chairman for the next term by members of the Georgia Music Educators Association.
The association, made up of almost 4,000 music teachers in all grade levels and musical divisions, tasks its chairman with overseeing all band events in the state.
"This is his heart," said Central High Principal Dana Harman, who Ruby praised for being so supportive of the school's band program. "Teaching students about their talents and what they can achieve with them is what he loves."
Ruby said the responsibility of overseeing many events for two years will be "busy, but exciting."
"It's one of those things — it's going to be a very busy time, but I will learn so much from it and will gain so much that it will definitely be worth it," he said.
Although he will have an even fuller plate, Ruby said he will strive to as organized as possible juggling the state band chairman responsibilities with the Central High band.
"I will serve to the best of my ability," Ruby said. "Our program at Central will continue to be my top priority, and I'm excited about this new endeavor."
Ruby will serve the association for two years after a year of training under current chairman, Robin Christian, of Ringgold High School.
"It is a tremendous group of band directors who work together," Ruby said. "It will be an honor to serve and I am honored to have been chosen by my colleagues to this important position. I will work very hard for the band students and directors in the state."
Ruby is in his 15th year as the director of bands and fine arts chairman at Central High, earning consistent superior ratings at concert, jazz and marching events.
Harman said the band director is "very deserving" of the honor.
"He is a fine band director, but not only that — he's also a fine person," the principal said. "He works very hard to build up students and the program."
As for why Ruby was elected, Harman thinks the high esteem in which Georgia band directors hold Ruby was a big help.
"He is good at getting out the good news beyond our system," Harman said. "He's active in music education all around, and has an excellent reputation with his peers."
Ruby received a bachelor's degree in music education from the University of West Georgia and a master's degree in music education from the Vandercook College of Music in Chicago.
Ruby has served four terms as the GMEA's District 7 chairman and has served on several committees therein. He is a certified head adjudicator for the large-group performance evaluations and has received the prestigious National Band Association Certificate of Merit for Music Excellence.
The 2012 Teacher of the Year recipient has been chosen as the STAR teacher of CHS for at least five years.
Under his direction, the Central-Carroll Lion Pride has earned more than 300 superior ratings, 180 class placement awards and 30 grand championships in the last 15 years, receiving letters of commendation from former Georgia governors.
GMEA is an association of almost 4,000 music teachers in all areas from kindergarten through university.
Their largest population segment is public and private school primary and secondary teachers in the ares of band, chorus, orchestra and general classroom music. GMEA also serves private music instructors, home-schooled students, college music students and faculty.
They provide evaluative and participatory events for students, both individually and in small and large groups in those areas as well as continuing education opportunities for active teachers.
GMEA is also an advocacy group which promotes the concept of school and private music opportunities for all students at all levels.