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 band staff 



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 at Helena since 2019. Prior to coming to Helena, he taught 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. Brent currently lives in Alabaster with his wife Kaitlyn, their daughter Scarlett, who was born in September of 2018, a cat named Tigris and a two dogs named Roxie and Ace.

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Middle School Director 


Katie Burnside is the Band Director of the Helene Middle School Bands. Mrs. Burnside has 6 years of teaching experience prior to Helena. She most recently was the Assistant Band Director at Clay-Chalkville Middle School where she also assisted with Clay-Chalkville High School Bands.

Mrs. Burnside has received a Bachelor of Arts Degree from The University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2013 and a Master of Music from Auburn University in 2016. Her primary instrument is the oboe, with which she has performed in church, community, and school related bands across the state. In December of 2017, she performed at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic held in Chicago, IL as a member of The Alabama Winds.

Bands under Mrs. Burnside's direction have consistently scored well at State Festivals.

 colorguard sponsor 


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)!

dance team sponsor 


Jenni Russell is the Dance Team 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 daughter Sealy.  

majorette sponsor 


Lillie Brewer Beall is the majorette sponsor for the Helena High School Band. She was a majorette at Helena High School and graduated in 2016. Lillie was a Tigerette at the University of West Alabama from 2016-2018. She later transferred to the University of Alabama at Birmingham where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education. She currently lives in Helena and teaches Reading at Helena Elementary School.

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