Walton High School
Mike Back has been at Walton High School in Marietta, Georgia since 1985, where he serves as the Director of Bands and Fine Arts Department Chair. Prior to his appointment as Director of Bands, Mr. Back served as the assistant director at Walton for thirteen years. Before coming to Walton, Mike was the percussion coordinator and arranger for the Spirit of Atlanta Drum and Bugle Corps. As a native of Alexandria, Kentucky, Mike attended Morehead State University in Morehead, Kentucky where he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education in 1981.
Under Mr. Back’s leadership, the band program at Walton has 285 students performing in four concert bands, marching band, two jazz bands, full orchestra and winter guard. The band has received national recognition through performances at Bands of America Regional and Grand National competitions. The band has also marched in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and is a two-time participant in the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California. In 2010, the John Philip Sousa Foundation presented the Walton Band with the prestigious Sudler Shield, an international award recognizing marching bands of world class excellence.
Mr. Back is a member of the National Band Association, Music Educators National Conference, Georgia Music Educators Association, the Percussive Arts Society, Phi Mu Alpha, Phi Beta Mu and Who’s Who Among Americas Teachers. He also served on the staff of the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Marching Band that performed in the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta.
Mr. Back has served as a clinician, judge and consultant throughout the United States and is an educational artist for Innovative Percussion. He lives in Marietta, Georgia with his wife Andrea, and their two children, Katie and Connor.