John Heath grew up in Aurora, graduating from Aurora West High School in 1970. Active in band, choir, orchestra, art, and theatre throughout high school, these activities and their teachers, laid the groundwork for his life as a music educator. At the University of Illinois, he earned bachelor’s degrees in Music Education and Tuba Performance, and later a master’s degree in Music Education. Heath started his teaching career as the high school band director in Highland, Ill., near St. Louis. While in Highland, he was also conductor of the Highland Municipal Band and the principal tuba and section bassist with the St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra. In the fall of 1990, Heath came to the 80 members of the Batavia High School band as their new director. In the next 22 years, he would see those 80 students turn into over 265 students. During those years, Heath and his students had many memorable experiences, including concerts, tours, musicals, hoagie sales, halftime shows, and Homecoming dance routines. Each experience enriched the lives of his students. During his career, Heath has received the ILMEA Distinguished Service Award, Kane County Regional Superintendents Award, Illinois State Board of Education “Those Who Excel” Award, Chicagoland Outstanding Music Educator Award, was a seven-time recipient of Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers, and is past president of the ILMEA. Currently, Heath is a visiting assistant professor at Northern Illinois University, and conductor of the Batavia Community Band and the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp International Wind Ensemble.