A $2,500 grant has been awarded to the Shiawassee Arts Council from the Gerald Gilbert Memorial Endowment Fund administered by the Shiawassee Community Foundation and funded by Charles Lyons. This grant will provide arts instruction to individuals with developmental disabilities at the Shiawassee Arts Council in partnership with The Arc Shiawassee. (pictured left to right: Piper Brewer, Executive Director- Shiawassee Arts Council, Linda Ruehle, Arts Education Director-Shiawassee Arts Council, Carol Soule, Executive Director-Shiawassee Community Foundation and Don Levi, Chairman/President-Shiawassee Community Foundation)
Mr. Gilbert was an inspiration to students for 25 years as a vocal music instructor at Owosso High School. He was regarded by his colleagues in the Michigan School Vocal Association (MSVA) for his ability to develop and inspire members of Owosso High School’s renowned A Cappella Choir to consistently win highly prized state honors.
Most of all, Gilbert is remembered by Owosso High School alumni for his passion for music and his example of striving for excellence. Born in Traverse City, Michigan, Gilbert graduated from Central Michigan University with a BA degree and from the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago with a Master’s degree. He was the director of the Michigan Honors Choir and voted Outstanding Music Teacher of the Year by the MSVA in 1970. He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy, serving in the Pacific in World War II. He retired from Owosso High School in 1978 and passed away at the age of 63 in 1988.