Mr. Shafer is in his first year at Ponder. For the six years prior to this appointment, Mr. Shafer served as an Assistant Band Director at Newman Smith High School in Carrollton, TX. During his time at Smith, the program placed 11th at State Marching Competition in 2013, received numerous division 1 ratings at UIL events, and had multiple all-state, area, and region band participants. The jazz program at Smith received multiple top three finishes at various festivals across the state along with performing with some of the best jazz musicians in the country. Mr. Shafer was also an Instructor at Weatherford College (2006-2013) where he directed the jazz band, pep band, and taught jazz improvisation and other music courses.
Born and raised in Houston, Mr. Shafer attended Sam Houston State University where he received his Bachelor’s degree in Saxophone Performance. In 2004, Mr. Shafer moved to Fort Worth to study music at Texas Christian University and earned his Master’s degree in Saxophone Performance in 2006. While at TCU, Mr. Shafer was the jazz graduate assistant under Curt Wilson and performed with the jazz band, orchestra and wind symphony.
During the last 20 years, Mr. Shafer has had the pleasure to perform all over the Houston and DFW areas as a free-lance musician. He has played in multiple musicals including: Gypsy, Guys and Dolls, The Wiz, Oklahoma, and The Fantastiks. He also has had the pleasure to perform with Wayne Bergeron, Sal Lozano, Dave Steinmeyer, and Steve Cole. Mr. Shafer was also a member of the Walt Disney World Collegiate All Star Band in 2005.
Mr. Shafer is a proud member of Texas Music Educators Association, Association of Small School Bands, Texas Jazz Educators Association, and the North American Saxophone Alliance. He currently lives in The Colony with his wife Ann, two children Jackson and Avery, and their dog, Story.