Ms. Melissa Pettinger
As of 2014, Melissa Pettinger is pleased to serve her second year as the Director of Middle School Bands for the Monroe County School District. Previously, Ms. Pettinger served as director of bands at Miller Fine Arts Middle School in Macon, GA.
Ms. Pettinger graduated Summa Cum Laude from The Florida State University with a degree in Music Education. While at Florida State, she concentrated on saxophone studying under Mr. Patrick Meighan, and participated in several ensembles including Symphonic Band, Marching Chiefs, Saxophone Orchestra, Seminole Swing Machine, Campus String Orchestra, Choral Union, and Mas N Steel. As an active member of the College of Music, Ms. Pettinger participated in Sigma Alpha Iota Professional Music Fraternity and the College of Music Board of Advisors.
Today, Ms. Pettinger remains a strong advocate for and active member of the music education field as a member of Professional Association of Georgia Educators, Georgia Music Educators Association, National Association for Music Educators, and Pi Kappa Lambda Music Honor Society.
Mr. Stephen Braswell is in his second year as the elementary school band director and Mary Persons High School Associate Director. He graduated from the Shiloh High School in Snellville, Georgia in 2006 where he studied tuba under Andrew VanDevender and Dion Muldrow. After graduating from Shiloh High School, Mr. Braswell attended Gainesville State College. While at Gainesville State College, Mr. Braswell performed in many ensembles including the Gainsville State Symphonic Band, Tuba Ensemble, Tuba Quartet, Brass Ensemble, Brass Quintet, and Trombone Ensemble. While at Gainsville, Mr. Braswell studied tuba, trombone, and euphonium under Don Strand. Once completing two years at Gainesville, Mr. Braswell attended the University of Georgia where he performed in numerous ensembles including the University of Georgia Wind Symphony under director Gregg Gausline, the University of Georgia Redcoat Band, the UGA Tuba Ensemble, and a UGA tuba quartet. Mr. Braswell studied tuba under David Zerkel and Brenard Flythe at the University of Georgia, and graduated from UGA with a Bachelors Degree in Music Education in 2011. Mr. Braswell has performed numerous recitals, taught band camps at over nine different high schools, performed with the Metropolitan Youth Symphony Orchestra, and the Dekalb Symphony Orchestra.
Currently, Mr. Braswell is in his second year on staff with the MPHS marching band and teaching lessons to brass students.
Mrs. Sykes is in her eleventh year with the Mary Persons Marching Band and her first year as Auxiliary Coordinator. Under Mrs. Sykes leadership the color guard has seen consistent improvement and growth. This past year the color guard was awarded a superior rating at the Heart of Georgia Marching Festival which is the highest rating a color guard team can achieve. Ms. Sykes works at Hubbard Elementary, helping us recruit from an early age.