Christopher Dorsey (big band director) received his bachelor’s degree in music education from Jackson State University (1983) and his master’s degree in education in instrumental music from the University of Florida (1986). He has taught for more than 26 years at various schools in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. All of his bands: Jazz, Orchestra and Concert, have received superior ratings on the district and state levels for more than 25 consecutive years. For the past nine years, he has been the director of instrumental music at Dillard Center of the Arts, the only performing arts magnet high school in Broward County. The ensemble has won first place at the Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Competition (2012 and 2011) and the Swing Central High School Jazz Workshop and Competition (2012, 2011, and 2010). Christopher serves as the conductor of the Miami Wind Symphony Jazz Ensemble and is the founder and artistic director of Apprentices in Jazz, whose mission is to train aspiring high school and college student musicians to become mentors/teachers of instrumental music students in middle and high school. He established the Florida Regional Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Festival, in partnership with Jazz @ Lincoln Center and Broward College. The inaugural festival occurred on March 23, 2013.