Purdue band director receives one of state's highest honors

Purdue Bands & Orchestras director Jay Gephart, right, was presented the Sagamore of the Wabash on Sunday (Nov. 24) by Purdue President Mitch Daniels, left. (Photo/Brent Russell)

Gov. Eric Holcomb has given Gephart the Sagamore of the Wabash, an award for those who have rendered a distinguished service to the state.

Posted: Nov 26, 2019 6:20 AM
Updated: Nov 26, 2019 6:22 AM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) Purdue Bands and Orchestras Director Jay Gephart has been awarded one of the state's highest awards. 

Gov. Eric Holcomb has given Gephart the Sagamore of the Wabash, an award for those who have rendered a distinguished service to the state.

Gephart was presented the award Sunday by Purdue President Mitch Daniels on behalf of Gov. Holcomb. State Rep. Sheila Klinker also presented Gephart with a golden seal of the state for his 25 years as a faculty member at Purdue. The university does not have a music school.

Gephart came to West Lafayette in 1995 and became the director of Purdue Bands in 2006. The Purdue All-American Marching Band has traveled across the world under his leadership, including performances in Beijing, Colombia, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and the St. Patrick's Day Parade. In 2019, the band celebrated 100 years of playing at the Indianapolis 500.

Among those who have received Sagamores have been astronauts, presidents, ambassadors, artists, musicians, politicians and ordinary citizens who have contributed greatly to the Hoosier heritage.

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