Meet the Staff

 

 

Jonathan Pwu

Band Director

As a South Bay native, Jonathan is both honored and humbled to return and serve as an educator in the South Bay to provide a fulfilling music experience. Jonathan received his undergraduate degree in Music from U.C. Davis, where he was awarded a Departmental Citation for Academic Excellence and Outstanding Musical Performance. He was a member of the U.C. Davis Concert Band and Wind Ensemble under the direction of Pete Nowlen, and also served as manager and student conductor. In addition to his college participation he also marched Baritone in the Blue Devils B drum and bugle corps.

From 2012-2016 Jonathan served as an Instrumental Music Teacher at Saratoga High School. In his time there he helped take the band to the 2012 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York, the 2016 Rose Parade in Pasadena, and the Winter Percussion ensemble to the 2014 WGI Finals in Dayton. The marching band was also the 2015 Bands of America Northern California Regional champion.

Jonathan’s goal is to teach through music and prepare students for life with meaningful skills developed from a music program, including good work ethic, teamwork, and community. He firmly believes and lives by educator and speaker Scott Lang’s motto, “The more you give, the more you get.” He has served on the board of Santa Clara County Band Director’s Association (SCCBDA) and CMEA Bay Section. Outside of music, Jonathan’s passions include backpacking, cooking, and technology

Debbi O’Donnell

Music Aide

Debbie O’Donnell has been an aide in the Union School District for over 30 years, having become the music department aide in 1987. She has been the aide for 6 different band directors. She is an expert copier, organizer and planner. She loves Disneyland and her grandkids.

 

John Russell

Jazz Band

John Russell directs the De Anza College Symphonic Winds, Jazz Ensemble, and Jazz Combos. He performs in professional ensembles throughout the Bay Area as a trombonist and has taught at the K-12 through college/university level. He has been the instructor for Jazz Band at Dartmouth Middle School for over 20 years.

 

Gina Jenkins

Choir

Gina began dancing at age three and often could be found creating elaborate productions choreographed to Barry Manilow tunes and performed on the backyard lawn.  She studied piano and played the clarinet in both the Dartmouth and Branham High School bands. While at Dartmouth, Gina also sang in the choir and discovered her love for singing.  Since then, she has sung with the Branham High School choir and Madrigals, community and church choirs, and in several musical theater productions.  Gina is a vocal coach for the DMS Spring Musical and for Musical Theater classes and productions at Leigh High School.  Someday she would love to fulfill her dream of being the lead singer for a rock band, but for now, she is content helping students bring the joy of song into their lives.

Tara Seoane and Kristen Johnson Color Guard Instructors