Prior to his university position, Dr. Schuman served as Director of Bands for Stone County Schools. During his tenure at Stone, his bands established a reputation that gained national acclaim. In addition to winning five state marching band championship titles, his bands received consistent superior ratings in concert, sight-reading, and marching and participated in special performances at prominent events including the 2001 Midwest Clinic, the 2001 and 2006 Southern Instrumental Conductors Conference, the 2001 Mississippi Bandmasters Association Convention, the 2002 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the 2005 Presidential Inaugural Parade for President George W. Bush. Dr. Schuman has twice been honored by the National Band Association with its Citation of Excellence and was selected as one of three national winners of the 2004 NBA International Conducting Symposium where he rehearsed and conducted the Italian Army Band in Rome. He has been named the state and regional winner of the ASBDA-UMI Distinguished Band Director Award (1998), Star Teacher for Stone High School (2003, 2005, 2010), GCBDA High School Band Director of the Year (1997, 1999, 2018), and honored by the Delta chapter of Phi Beta Mu with the Mississippi Band Director of the Year Award in 2003. Dr. Schuman holds both the Bachelor and Master of Music Education Degrees from The University of Southern Mississippi and the Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Conducting from the University of South Carolina. He is a contributing writer for three editions of Teaching Music through Performance in Band, active as an adjudicator and clinician, and has made four lecture appearances at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago. Dr. Schuman is a member of various professional organizations including the Gulf Coast Band Director’s Association (Past President), Mississippi Bandmasters Association, National Band Association (currently serving on the Board as an elected high school representative), Phi Beta Mu (current Delta chapter Board Member), World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE), and the American School Band Directors Association. In 2011, he was elected to membership in the prestigious American Bandmasters Association.
Mr. Pepper was a two year member of the Mississippi Lions All-State Band (1998 & 1999) and a member of The Crossmen Drum and Bugle Corps in 2001, placing 7th in the World Competition. He is an active trombonist performing at First Baptist Church in Gulfport, MS. Mr. Pepper has been on staff with the Sounds of the South Band Camp in Poplarville, Mississippi, he is a member of various professional organizations, and he is the Secretary and Webmaster for the Gulf Coast Band Director Association. Mr. Pepper is an active band clinician, and he served as the Jazz Band Director for the MS Lions All-State Band from 2017 - 2019.
Mr. Pepper has been married to his wife, Brandy, for 14 years and they have two beautiful daughters, Olivia and Abigail.
Mr. Kevin Shira
Kevin Shira is currently in his fourth year on staff at Ocean Springs High School serving as the Assistant Director of Bands. His teaching responsibilities include assisting with directing the Blue-Grey Pride, conducting the OSHS Concert Band, and instructing the saxophones and double reeds at Ocean Springs Upper Elementary.
Prior to joining OSHS, Mr. Shira spent two years as the Assistant Director of Bands for the Pass Christian School District. His concert ensembles earned consistent superior ratings both at local and state evaluations. In the Fall of 2016, he assisted the award winning Pride of the Pass Marching Band as they won the Class 4A silver medal, placing first in music.
Shira attended Colonial Forge High School in his hometown of Stafford, Virginia. His Bachelors in Music Education was earned at the University of Southern Mississippi where he was actively involved in promoting the school of music. At USM, Shira performed with the Symphonic Winds, Symphony Orchestra and in numerous chamber ensembles under the direction of Dr. Mohamad Schuman, Dr. Jay Dean, and Dr. Kimberly Woolly. Shira was a four year drum major of the Pride of Mississippi, leading them in performance at the 84th annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, the 2011 Conference USA championship Game, and several other bowl game appearances. In 2019, Mr. Shira received his Masters of Music Education degree at William Carey University studying with Dr. Wes Dykes and Dr. Jeremy Morgan. In December 2019, Mr. Shira was awarded the prestigious A.E. McClain Outstanding Young Band Director Award from Mississippi Bandmasters Association.
Mr. Shira is a member of the National Band Association, the National Association for Music Education, The Mississippi Bandmasters Association, and the Gulf Coast Band Directors Association. He is an active clinician around the state of Mississippi and currently serves as Drum Major Coordinator for the University of Southern Mississippi's All South Drum Major and Guard Camp.
Elizabeth Jackson has served as head director of the Ocean Springs Middle School and Upper Elementary Band programs since 2016. A native of Brandon, Mississippi, Ms. Jackson graduated from Northwest Rankin High School and continued on to the University of Southern Mississippi. After graduating summa cum laude from USM with studies in music education and history in 2009, she went on to receive her Master of Music Education while working as a graduate assistant for the USM Bands. During her time at USM she had the honor of conducting the USM Wind Ensemble and the Federazione Bande Siciliane in Sicily, Italy, and she was a member of the band staff that led the Pride of Mississippi Marching Band to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. Ms. Jackson performed as a member of the USM Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, and the Southern Miss Steel Pan Orchestra (SoMiSPO). Her primary instructors included clarinet professors Dr. Gregory Oakes, Dr. Jonathan Holden, and Dr. Jackie McIlwain, bassoonist Dr. Kim Woolly, and conducting pedagogue Dr. Thomas V. Fraschillo.
Ms. Jackson moved to Ocean Springs to start her career in 2011. In her current duties she oversees all bands at both OSMS and OSUE. She leads the "All-Superior" OSMS Symphonic Band, teaches woodwinds in the Concert and Varsity Band, and teaches beginner clarinet and flute class. In her time as the assistant director of OSMS through 2016, her Concert Band consistently earned Superior ratings each year at the Gulf Coast Band Directors Association (GCBDA) Concert Festival.
Ms. Jackson maintains an active clarinet studio with students from around the Gulf Coast who continually rank in the Mississippi Lions All-State Band. In 2014 Ms. Jackson was named the GCBDA Middle School Band Director of the Year. She is currently the 1st Vice President of the GCBDA and was recently inducted into the American School Band Directors Association (ASBDA). Ms. Jackson has also been on the staff of the Sounds of the South Music Camp since 2015 and performs with the Mississippi Wind Symphony in the Jackson area each summer.
Cam Roberts serves as the percussion instructor for Ocean Springs instrumental students. Beginning his teaching career with the Blue-Grey Pride in 2014, Mr. Roberts directs the high school battery and front ensemble, high school percussion ensemble, and assists all symphonic bands during concert season. He instructs 6th grade Beginner Band percussion and middle school percussion students. He is an active member of Gulf Coast Band Directors’ Association and the Percussive Arts Society.
Mr. Roberts holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Southern Mississippi where he performed with the Pride of Mississippi, Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, and USM Orchestra under conductors Dr. Mohamed Schumann, Dr. Thomas V. Fraschillo, Dr. Catherine Rand, and Dr. Jay Dean. He was selected as one of the student soloists to perform Ney Rosauro’s Concerto for Marimba and Wind Ensemble with the university Wind Ensemble in 2013. As a member of the USM Percussion Studio, his primary instructor was Dr. John Wooton along with studio assistants Dr. Brian Cheesman, Dr. Jason Mathena, Mr. Andrew Gilstrap. Mr. Roberts was a member of the USM Percussion Ensemble and SoMiSPO Steel Pan Orchestra.
Other performance opportunities Mr. Roberts has enjoyed include being a section instrumentalist for the productions of Sweeny Todd, Hairspray, The Music Man, and Sunset Boulevard. He has also enjoyed performing with Main Street Baptist Church of Hattiesburg, Meridian Symphony Orchestra, and Gulf Coast Symphony Orchestra.
A native of Lucedale, Mississippi, Mr. Roberts was a six-year participant of the Southeast Mississippi Band Clinics and a four-year participant of the Gulf Coast Band Clinic and Solo and Ensemble adjudications. He was a member of the MHSAA Band Clinic in 2008 and of the Mississippi Lions All-State Band of 2009. During high school, his primary percussion instructors were Mr. Artie Adams, Mr. Nathan Mercer, Dr. Jeff Grant, and Dr. Brian Cheesman.
Trent Patterson will join the Ocean Springs Middle School Band Staff as the assistant director beginning in the fall. Mr. Patterson received an undergraduate degree in music education from The University of Southern Mississippi, where he performed with the Symphonic Winds, Symphony Orchestra, USM Trombone Choir, and the Pride of Mississippi under conductors Dr. Mohamad Schuman, Dr. Gregory Fuller, and Dr. Ben McIlwain. His primary instructors were trombone professor Dr. Ben McIlwain and assistant professors of music education Dr. Amanda Schlegel and Dr. Mark Waymire. In 2017, Mr. Patterson returned to USM to obtain a Master of Music Education while serving as a graduate assistant for the band and music education departments. While serving as a graduate assistant, Mr. Patterson had the opportunity to conduct the University Band, USM Basketball Pep Band, and USM Trombone Choir, as well as assist with instruction in many music education courses and the daily workings of the marching band. During the pursuit of the master’s in music education, Mr. Patterson performed with the Symphonic Winds, Jazz Lab I, and USM Trombone Choir under conductors Dr. Colin McKenzie, Mr. Larry Panella, and Dr. Ben McIlwain. His primary instructors were music education faculty members Dr. Amanda Schlegel, Dr. Mark Malone, Dr. Mark Waymire, and trombone professor Dr. Ben McIlwain.
Prior to this job, Mr. Patterson has three years of teaching experience. His first two years came in the Hattiesburg Public School District, where he served as the middle school band director from 2015-2017. During his time there, Mr. Patterson taught 7th and 8th grade band and assisted with all aspects of the 6th grade and high school band. After obtaining his master’s degree, Mr. Patterson accepted a job teaching in the Bay-Waveland School District in 2019. While serving the district, Mr. Patterson taught 6th-8th grade band, the high school jazz band, and assisted with all aspects of the high school marching and concert band. With Mr. Patterson’s assistance, the high school marching band received all superior ratings and finished 9th place at State Marching Championships. Mr. Patterson has also taught private lessons on tuba, euphonium, trombone, and oboe since January 2018 for the Ocean Springs Bands!
Though born in Decatur, Alabama, Mr. Patterson graduated high school from Meridian High School in 2011. While in high school, he was a participant of many honor bands and was a member of the Mississippi Lion’s All-State Band in 2010 and 2011.