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Join us November 11th - 13th as we take part in the "Georgia Tech Tradition and Pageantry" for Alumni Band Weekend 2022!
In case you missed it, the Annual Business Meeting was held on Saturday, December 11, which was filled primarily with elections and a few updates and reports. Thank you to everybody who joined in virtually on your Saturday afternoon! Jen Isaacs sent out minutes yesterday afternoon if you're so inclined to read that sort of thing.
For everybody here, I would like to provide my final report...
Back in October I informed the Board that I would not be seeking another term on the GTBAA Executive Board. I have served on the Board for 11 years, the last 6 as Executive Director. That's a long time for anybody to be doing anything and have known nothing else since I got out of Tech. Now married with two children, it became pretty obvious to me over the last year and a half that I'm not able to dedicate the amount of time and energy to this role that it deserves. It's time for me to step away.
For the last six years, I was entrusted with the responsibility of leading GTBAA. It is a job that I took great pride in and did my best to deliver for you all. I'll be the first to tell you that things were not always perfect and I had swings and misses to go along with all of the successes, but I believe I can say, and I hope you'll agree that I left things better than how I found them.
By far, the accomplishment of the Board that I'm most proud of is surfacing the spirit of giving among our Band alumni, both to the Georgia Tech Band and Ma Tech herself. The band alumni helped with the Band's expenses for the Ireland trip to the tune of $10,000 in 2016, won the Alumni Association's last Roll Call Challenge among all Affinity Groups in the 2017-2018 giving year, and endowed the Georgia Tech Band Alumni Association Student Leadership Scholarship, exceeding the minimum gift required of $25,000 to fully endow a scholarship. This scholarship will be awarded in the near future this academic year.
Serving on the GTBAA Executive Board is oftentimes a thankless job, but is still very rewarding. There are highs, lows, and everything in between, but there are always fellow band alumni there to support you however they can. It is now my honor and privilege to introduce to you the 2021-2022 GTBAA Executive Board:
Bridget Neukum, Executive Director
Emily Jackson, Secretary
John Kelley, Treasurer
Sam "Fireball' Feuer, Member at Large
Heidy Lopez, Member at Large
Wes Hunt, Member at Large
Ben Simon, Member at Large
Matthew Zilvetti, Member at Large
There are some familiar faces in new roles and new members on the board. All of the folks who stepped up to serve are fantastic people and, in my opinion, will do a great job leading GTBAA for the next year and beyond! Congratulations to all!
I would also like to thank Jen Isaacs for her 9 years of service on the Board as Secretary and Jason Morcos for his 2 years of service as Treasurer. Jen was Secretary through all of my terms as Executive Director and I can't thank her enough for her work and giving me a steer when I needed it. I would like to thank Jason for his outstanding stewardship and thoughtful insights.
On a personal note, I would like to say "thank you" to everybody who has reached out and offered their support, thoughts, feedback, insight, everything over the years. There are far too many people to name individually, but I hope to be able to catch each one of you personally as we run into each other in the future.
I wish nothing but the best of luck to the new Board. I know they will all do well. They will also have my full support as we work through our transition and anytime you need anything at all!
Ramble This Way, Ramble That Way, Ramble Off the Field!
Immediate Past Executive Director
Save the date for our 2021 Band Alumni Reunion weekend November 12-14, 2021. This year we will have a dedicated GAMEDAY weekend for Georgia Tech Band Alumni to reconnect and have the opportunity to meet, connect, and perform with the current Yellow Jacket Marching Band.
For the latest information and to RSVP, CLICK HERE
As with everything over the past 14 months, we've had to cancel, delay, or otherwise alter any grand plans we may have had and we were not able to do anything as we normally do. This was especially true for any and all things that we do around Homecoming.
Often lost in the shuffle of the ever-increasingly-busy week and weekend that is Homecoming, is what is probably the GTBAA Executive Board's favorite activity: interviewing candidates for the Outstanding Junior Award.
For those who may not know or have forgotten, the Outstanding Junior Award is an award presented annually (typically around Homecoming) to a third-year Georgia Tech Band student who was nominated by their band directors and/or peers and is otherwise considered to be...outstanding. (That is, outstanding in their contribution to the Georgia Tech Band.) The candidates really are always outstanding and the Board is often left with an extremely difficult decision, which, interestingly enough, is one that we believe really cannot get wrong, speaking to just how awesome the active YJMB students are. This year was no exception, as each candidate was truly outstanding in their own right.
And so, it is our honor to announce to you the Outstanding Junior Award winner for the 2020-21 academic year:
Congratulations, Nichole and thank you for all that you do for the Georgia Tech Band! We look forward to the possibility of being back on campus this coming fall to meet you in person.
Ramble this Way, Ramble that Way, Ramble off the Field!
John Gorta, Executive Director
Jen Isaacs, Secretary
Jason Morcos, Treasurer
Sam "Fireball" Feuer, Member at Large
Heidy Lopez, Member at Large
Wes Hunt, Member at Large
Emily Jackson, Member at Large
Bridget Neukum, Member at Large
On February 17, I signed the agreement with the Georgia Tech Foundation, Georgia Tech Alumni Association, and Office of Financial Aid, officially marking the creation of our organization’s scholarship endowment. All of our gifts over the past two years allowed us to exceed our goal of raising the minimum gift amount for a scholarship endowment prior to the end of 2020. As such, we can award the scholarship to a deserving student leader in the GT Band for this coming academic year.
This is a momentous occasion for GTBAA as an organization and everybody who gave as a collective group of individuals. An endowment was an idea that had long been thought of by Executive Boards and members past and I am honored to be associated with a group of people who sought to capitalize on the opportunity laid in front of us to make it happen. We’ve created something that will truly leave a lasting legacy on the Georgia Tech Band by providing for the students. I could not be more proud of our group for having achieved this goal. My hope is that our efforts have also fostered a culture of giving back along the way so that the Band may have it even better than we did back in our day.
I want to give my sincere THANK YOU and CONGRATULATIONS to everybody who played a part, no matter how large or small, in making our scholarship endowment a reality!
Remember, this is just the beginning and we have to continue to help this scholarship endowment grow. If you maybe missed out last year, wish to give another gift, or perhaps even a recurring gift, this can be done online directly with the GT Foundation (don't mind the out-of-date text and description!) or by contacting the Alumni Association.
I hope we are all able to be back on campus soon to reconnect with each other like only GT Band alumni can.
Ramble this way, Ramble that way, Ramble off the field!
John Gorta, MGT '09
Georgia Tech Band Alumni Association