Director of Bands
Mr. Lee Newman has served as the Director of Bands at Norcross High School since 2011. His duties include directing the Wind Symphony, Concert Band, Jazz Band, Blue Devil Marching Band, and teaching International Baccalaureate music classes. During his time at Norcross, Mr. Newman has continued a proud tradition of excellence. The program has grown from 240 students to well over 350 students participating in band during his tenure. Mr. Newman’s ensembles have been invited to perform at the Georgia State Honor Bands of Distinction, 64th Annual UGA January Music Festival, the 2015 and 2018 Music for All Southeastern Regional Concert festival, and the 2018 Yamaha National Concert Festival. Mr. Newman has served in multiple leadership roles including NHS Fine Arts Department Chair, District 13 Band Chair, and District 13 Chair.
Prior to his appointment at Norcross, Mr. Newman was the Director of Bands at Elbert County Comprehensive High School in Elberton, Georgia from 2003-2011. Mr. Newman has received two degrees in music education from the University of Georgia (BMus 2001 and MMed 2003). While at UGA, Mr. Newman studied conducting with Dr. John Culvahouse and Professor Alan Crowell and trumpet with Dr. Edward Sandor. He continues to be active as a freelance performer and private lessons instructor.
His professional affiliations include the National Band Association, Georgia Music Educators Association, and the National Association for Music Education. In his free time, Mr. Newman enjoys running. He and his wife, Katie, have been married since 2003. They have two children, Charlotte (14) and Clark (9).
Email Mr. Newman.
Maria phillips hesketh
Associate Director of Bands
Maria Phillips Hesketh is an accomplished music educator who currently serves as Associate Director of Bands at Norcross High School in Norcross, Georgia. With a passion for teaching and a commitment to excellence, she is dedicated to helping her students develop their musical abilities and achieve their goals.
As the lead teacher for the NHS Symphonic Winds and the NHS Concert Band, Mrs. Hesketh is responsible for guiding her students through a rigorous and rewarding curriculum. In addition to her work with Norcross High School, she is an active member of the music education community in her county and district. She serves as a GCPS High School Band Lead Teacher, a conductor of the Gwinnett County Youth Wind Symphony, and the Winds and Percussion Coordinator for the Gwinnett County Youth Symphony.
Before joining the Norcross family, Mrs. Hesketh taught at Harrison High School in Kennesaw, Georgia, where she played an instrumental role in the success of the school's music program. As Assistant Band Director, she helped the Harrison Bands achieve impressive results, including performances at the Music for All Southeastern Regional Concert Festival and the GMEA In-State Conference. As Woodwind Caption Head, Mrs. Hesketh contributed to the marching band's achievement of the Bands of America Regional Champion title.
Mrs. Hesketh holds a Bachelor's degree in Music Education from Kennesaw State University, where she excelled academically and musically. While at KSU, she studied flute with Christina Smith and voice with Leah Partridge, and performed with several of the university's premier music ensembles, including the Wind Symphony, Women's Choir, Marching Band, and Concert Band. As the first drum major for "The Marching Owls", Mrs. Hesketh played a vital role in establishing the university's marching band culture. She also helped colonize the Iota Psi chapter of Tau Beta Sigma as its founding Treasurer.
Mrs. Hesketh is an active member of the National Association for Music Education and the Georgia Music Educators Association. Her commitment to music education and her students is evident in everything she does, from her tireless work in the classroom to her ongoing efforts to advance the field. She currently resides in Norcross, Georgia with her husband, Daniel.
Email Mrs. Hesketh.
Director of Percussion
Tyler attended Georgia Southern University where he earned a dual bachelor’s degree in Music Education and Music Performance in the Fall of 2018 under the direction and guidance of Dr. Matthew Fallin. Alongside his traditional collegiate music education, he also participated in DCI with 2 World Class Drum Corps including Spirit of Atlanta in 2014 and 2015, then Carolina Crown in 2016 as a member of the Front Ensemble. He also participated in the WGI Independent World Class ensemble Atlanta Quest from 2015-2017 as a member of the Front Ensemble.
Upon graduation from his undergraduate degrees, Tyler worked as a freelance percussion educator in Duluth, and Alpharetta, GA from 2018-2019. During this time he worked as a staff member for the Atlanta Quest front ensemble as well as serving as the front ensemble coordinator for the Atlanta Quest’s WGI Open Class group Q2. In 2019 Tyler was granted an assistantship with Georgia Southern University as a band area graduate assistant while pursuing his master’s degree in Music Technology. While there he studied recording studio techniques, sound design and synthesis techniques, mixing and mastering audio, digital audio and video manipulation, and music programming languages under the direction and guidance of Dr. John Thompson and earned his Masters in the Spring of 2021.
Upon graduation with his master’s, Tyler returned to working as a freelance percussion educator, coordinator, and sound designer while working with East Cobb Middle School, Hightower Trail Middle School, and marching band/ indoor drumline for Milton High school. On the weekends, Tyler spends most of his time working with the Atlanta Quest organization, teaching both the open class and world class groups. Currently, Tyler Lives happily in Alpharetta with his girlfriend Amberleigh and cat Leo DiCatrio. In their off time they enjoy going on walks, hiking, going on spontaneous adventures and playing with Leo for quality entertainment.
Email Mr. Roquemore.
Deandre Pearson (he/they) currently serves as Director of ColorGuards at Norcross High School in Norcross, Georgia. He is a 2015 Graduate of Kell High School located in Marietta, GA. After graduating, Deandre has gone on to receive an extensive education in the marching arts with a high proficiency in equipment technique and choreography. He has performed with well known World Class groups such as The Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps, Carolina Crown, and Paramount WinterGuard. Prior to joining the team at Norcross, he has worked with many programs such as Kell High School, Etowah High School, Denmark High School, Collins Hill High School, East Coweta High School Open, Mayde Creek High school located in Houston, Texas, Reverie A (Now known as Reverie Open), The University of Georgia Flagline, and Noir independent.
Deandre currently resides in Atlanta, GA with his partner Jamie and their cat Percy.
Email Mr. Pearson.