A special award of

The John Philip Sousa

Michael BoitzMichael Boitz is the director of instrumental music at Saratoga High School in Saratoga, California. He has held this position since 1998. At Saratoga High, he also serves as the department chair.

Boitz earned his Bachelor of Music from Concordia College in Moorhead Minnesota, he then went on to Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois for his Master of Arts in Music Education.

After moving from Minnesota to California Boitz was named the CMEA Bay Area Freitas Award winner in 2005, the CMEA Orchestra Educator of the Year

The Bandworld Legion of Honor was established in 1989 to honor, over the course of a year, eight of the finest band directors in our business.

Recipients have taught for at least fifteen years, have maintained a very high-quality concert band program, and have contributed significantly to the profession through dedication to bands and band music.

Each is honored at the annual Sousa Foundation awards ceremony during the Midwest Band Clinic in Chicago, Illinois.

Chairman of the Legion of Honor Committee is Terry Austin, Virginia Commonwealth University.

in 2007 and the CMEA Band Educator of the Year in 2012.

He has served the profession in many different offices including the President of the Santa Clara County Band Directors, the CODA Representative to the CBDA, and the Area Rep of the Bay Area to CMEA. His groups continue to receive Unanimous Superior ratings at the CMEA Area and State Festivals.

When asked about things that shaped his life he says, “I have been fortunate to have studied with incredible educators from a young age all the way through graduate school. I’m still in contact with my Junior High, High School, College, and Graduate School teachers many years later, consider them mentors, and seek their advice regularly. I can’t imagine my life without the role models I have met in our profession, outside of official studies, that shape my teaching and overall career on a daily basis. Most importantly, I work with incredible and inspiring students every day, in a school community filled with colleagues, parents, and community members at large that support Excellence in Education to the highest degree.”

His philosophy is this, “The study of Music is for people of all ages at any level of proficiency. Being a good person comes first, being a good musician comes second. Herein lies the route to a joyful experience in endeavoring the most exciting, creative, and meaningful musical performances from which to learn and for the world to enjoy.”