A graduate of Auburn University with a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Music Education, Jeff Burnside has been teaching in Alabama for 31 years with the last 19 years being in the Shelby County School System. Prior to starting the band program at Helena High School, Mr. Burnside taught at Pelham High School, Homewood Middle School and B.C. Rain High School in Mobile. He is the President of the Shelby County Band Director’s Association, and also a member of the National Association for Music Education, Alabama Bandmasters Association, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia and remains active as a trumpet player in the Birmingham area.
A graduate of Auburn University with a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education, Brent Traylor has been teaching in Alabama for 3 years at Fayette County High School where he consistently earned superior ratings. He is a member of National Association for Music Education, Alabama Bandmasters Association, Kappa Kappa Psi, and currently an active horn player in the Tuscaloosa Area. Brent has been married since 2014 to his wife Kaitlyn. They have a daughter named Scarlett who was just born in September of 2018 and two fur babies, a cat named Tigris and a dog named Roxie.
Mr. Pruitt is the band director at Helena Middle School and teaches marching percussion and works with the marching band at Helena High School. The percussion section has consistently scored superior ratings at competitions and has won numerous best in class awards. He has been the middle school band director since the school opened in 2008. Before that, he taught for 12 years at Opelika High School and Middle School. Mr. Pruitt holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting (1991) and a Bachelor of Music Education degree (1996) from Auburn University and a Master of Science degree in Education (2000) from Troy State University. His son, Conner, attends Auburn University on scholarship as a diver with the Auburn Swim and Dive team.
Jordan Smith is the Majorette Sponsor for Helena High School Band. She teaches Special Education at Helena High School and is in her 7th year of teaching. Jordan graduated from the University of Montevallo and earned her Master's degree from University of Alabama at Birmingham. Jordan grew up in Helena and loves working in her hometown. She loves spending time with her adorable nieces Vanna and Isla.
dance team sponsor
Jenni Russell is the Dance Team Sponsor for the Helena High School Band. She graduated from Chelsea High School where she was a member of the Star Stepper dance team. Jenni received a Bachelor's of Science degree from Auburn University in Secondary Education Language Arts in 2007. Jenni was a member of the Auburn University Marching Band Color Guard. She earned her Master's of Arts degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in English as a Secondary Language Education in 2012. Jenni began her teaching career at Pelham High School where she coached the Pelham Colorguard team from 2008-2013. Jenni also coached the Pelham Pantherettes before moving to Helena High School in 2014. She is a certified Dance Team coach through the Universal Dance Association. Jenni currently lives in Helena with her husband Sam, daughter Sealy and dog Jasper.
Lindsey graduated from University of South Alabama with a bachelor's in Communications. She received her master's from Samford University in Secondary Education. Lindsey teaches English. Lindsey is passionate about the arts and music but has never played an instrument (unlike the rest of her family)!
BAND BOOSTER BOARD
EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT
Vice President- Lisa Viola
Co-Chair- Diane Watkins
Chair- JoAnna McClellan
Co-Chair- Brenda Rimmer
Chair- David and Ramona Rice
Chair- Allyson Agee
Co-Chair- Carolyn Fort
Chair- Mark Corley
Co-Chair- Brian Devereaux
COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA
Chair- Amy Jones
Co-Chair- Penny Walker
Daryl and Christy Ingram
Director of Bands- Jeff Burnside
Director of Bands- Brent Traylor
Percussion Sponsor- Lance Pruitt
Color Guard Sponsor- Lindsey Watson
Dance Team Sponsor- Jenni Russell
Majorette Sponsor- Jordan Smith