EA hires Robinson as new band director

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Tom Robinson wants to accomplish one thing as the new band director at Escambia Academy — for every student to have a lifetime of musical enjoyment.

Robinson was hired recently to take over the program at the Canoe school, and got straight to work last week escorting a small group of students to the Sound of the South Band Camp at Troy University.

“I want them to have what my wife (Jeri) and I have shared, which is a lifetime of musical enjoyment,” Robinson said. “Once you get too banged up, you can’t play football anymore, once your legs get shot, you can’t play baseball anymore.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Robinson holds a degree in history and education from the University of South Alabama, and has been a teacher for 10 years. The Pensacola, Fla. native is a history teacher and this is his first stint as a band director.

“The necessity of a band director was needed and I was asked to fill that role,” he said. “I was delighted to step up. The kids are just incredible. The people have been telling me for years how good the kids are. I’ve not noticed anything contrary to what I’ve been told.”

Robinson said even though this is his first time as a band director, he’s excited about the opportunity.

“Were all stepping out on faith,” he said. “I’m excited about it and the opportunity was something I wanted to do for a long time. The opportunities for a band director are slim. History is a much broader field.”

Robinson’s wife will also be helping in the band room, assisting with the woodwinds. Robinson will be helping with the brass section.

Both are music lovers.

Robinson has been living in Bay Minette for some 23 years, and helped form the Baldwin Pops, which has been playing music for 20 years.

Robinson said his love of music came to him after his mom suggested he try playing in the school band.

“To be honest, I wasn’t very good at football,” he said. “I love football. My mom took me to middle school band tryouts, and lo and behold, I found something I was good at.”

He said he’s had many influences throughout his career as a student and teacher.

“My first band director, John Buck at Bellview Middle School, he was a big influence,” Robinson said. “He was just a real huge inspiration. He made band fun. When I got into high school, I had a couple of band directors, Laurel Brownlee and Jim Crawford. Those two guys were huge influences.”

After graduating from high school, Robinson went to Graceland University in Lamoni, Iowa, where he majored in music education. He met his wife while there.

The Robinsons have two daughters, Kyra Francois, a seventh grade English teacher in Brandon, Miss., and Kayla Lewis, a pharmacy tech in Warner Robbins, Ga.