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The City Journals

Jordan High principal thanked, named outstanding administrator by Utah Music Educators

Apr 07, 2021 11:52AM ● By Julie Slama

UMEA President-Elect Geoff Anderson presented Jordan High Principal Wendy Dau with the Utah Music Educator Association’s Outstanding Administrator Award at Abravanel Hall. (Photo courtesy of Wendy Dau/Jordan High)

By Julie Slama | [email protected]

In late January, Jordan High Principal Wendy Dau received the Utah Music Educator Association’s Outstanding Administrator Award at Abravanel Hall. 

The honor is awarded to a public school administrator who has demonstrated commitment to and support of music education in the schools. 

“I love the high school because of the extracurricular activities, but I especially love music and theater,” Dau said. “Growing up, my family emphasized the importance of music, and my involvement in choir (a cappella as well as show choir) as a high school student provided me with lifelong memories and friendships that have influenced my dedication to music and the arts as a high school principal.” 

She was nominated by Jordan High choir teacher J.P. Kentros, who wrote: “Mrs. Dau is the fourth principal that I have worked with in my career, and she is everything a music teacher could ask for in a principal. Mrs. Dau is always tuned in to the arts, and is a huge advocate for music and performing arts programs.”

Kentros pointed out that Dau has supported both on- and off-campus performances, from recognizing students’ accomplishments to coming through when the choir trip’s flight was canceled one year during a snowstorm and when it was rebooked on four flights, Dau managed the last flight with the majority of students who left last, and were most upset.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Kentros said that Dau approved equipment to maintain live streaming capabilities as well as funds for blended learning technology. She also advocated for 25% capacity to attend in-person performing arts, matching those of sporting events.

Former Jordan High and current Brighton High Principal Tom Sherwood also received the Outstanding Administrator of the Year award. 

UMEA awards committee co-chair Jenni Perkins said the nominations for both of the teachers were “just awesome” and it’s her favorite part of her position.

“I feel like I’m bringing sunshine everywhere,” Perkins said. “We have the greatest opportunity in the world because we get to tell people that they’re being recognized by their peers for the great things they do in their classroom, and the administrators for all they support they provide to their teachers.  It’s humbling to interact with each of them as they are contacted and receive this recognition.”