Eric Jimenez M. Ed – Band Director
Music educator and educational leader, Jimenez established several outstanding band programs throughout the Houston Independent School District. During his tenure at schools such as Sharpstown MS, Hamilton MS, Waltrip HS, & Davis HS, Jimenez’ band programs increased in student participation, instrument inventory, received several first division UIL ratings and most outstanding band awards at numerous festivals. He was awarded Hamilton Middle School’s Teacher of the Year in 2012, LULAC Educator of the Year in 2015 and awarded the Grammy educational award for the his work at Jeff Davis HS. Most recently he served as an assistant principal at Frank Black MS. He continues to be an active clinician, mentor and consultant for arts educational programs. Jimenez is an alumn of Prairie View A&M University and Lamar University. He also serves as a member of Sigma Lambda Beta International Fraternity Inc and Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity.
Stephen Becker- Band Director
A native Missourian, Mr. Becker came to Houston with 22 years of teaching experience. His musical groups have toured nationally and internationally and have received outstanding ratings and awards at various festivals and competitions. In his tenure at Reagan High School, now Heights High School, Mr. Becker has worked in sustaining the music programs as co-band director, choir director, jazz band director and has overseen the mariachi program as the growth and transformation took place at Heights High School. He has been instrumental in keeping the musical groups visible and actively performing within the community. Under his leadership the Heights High School Jazz Band has received consistent division I ratings at jazz festivals and competitions. In his leisure, Mr. Becker enjoys traveling and experiencing the cuisine and culture of different places.
Matt Caballero- Color Guard Instructor
Matt Caballero, from Leander, TX and graduate of University of Houston. Currently works for Harris County Engineering Department within the Design Services division. Mr. Caballero is very interested the design and use of products, cities, clothing, dance and even visual art. Most recently he won a 1st place competition for the future of transportation, held at University of Houston. His work has been exhibited in cities like New York, Philadelphia and Miami. Mr. Caballero has been involved in the color guard profession since high school at Leander in 2003. Mr. Caballero served as the color guard director for Somerset high school 2008-2009 and took a teaching apprenticeship the following year. During the fall of 2015 Mr. Caballero was a member of UH Spirit of Houston color guard and was involved in some teaching and leadership roles.
Mr. Caballero is continuously involved with the community and professional organizations. He is a part of the American Institute of Architects, the Architectural League of New York and a board member on the UH LGBT Advisory Board. Mr. Caballero has volunteered with UH Alumni Association, Houston Pride, AIA Houston, Citizen Schools and Houston Food Bank, among others. He takes pride in the work he does, whatever it may be, and always try to find an angle for community involvement.
Joining the staff at Heights HS, he hopes to bring skills and leadership that will create a thriving program.
Shelly Carrol- Woodwind/Jazz Specialist
Saxophonist, hails from family of gospel singers and musicians in Houston, Texas. It was there that the music bug bit him at an early age and landed him in the famed Boys Choir of Houston. After picking up the saxophone, he was able to study with the legendary Texas Tenor greats Arnett Cobb and Don Wilkerson. At the time he didn’t know how revered these gentlemen were around the globe. They simply lived in his neighborhood. Shelley attended the city’s High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and was a standout in the city’s Summer Jazz Workshop Program. This is where he developed a true flair for the stage.
While attending the University of North Texas, Shelley earned a spot in the Grammy Nominated One O’clock Lab Band. There he recorded two critically acclaimed CD’s in 1990 – 91. During the same period, Mr. Carrol was invited to join the Duke Ellington Orchestra by trumpeter Barry Lee Hall. This would prove to be an enormous musical opportunity with worldwide exposure. Since joining the band, he has toured the U.S. and over 30 foreign countries. He has also recorded and or performed with Sheryl Crow, Maureen McGovern, Tony Bennet, Nancy Wilson, Joe Williams, Roger Waters and a host of others. Shelley evolved to record as a leader in 1997. He was able to feature members of the Duke Ellington Orchestra on his debut CD for Leaning House Records. His second CD, A Distant Star was released in the fall of 2001. The disc features pianist Bernard Wright, bassist Curtis Lundy, and drummer Sebastian Whittaker. This sophomore effort easily got get the critics and fans buzzing with excitement. Carrol’s latest release was recently recorded with his Monday night band. This group has been featured at The New Amsterdam Bar in Dallas for several years. Their CD entitled Gentle Friend is now available. Shelley also feels a need to share his musical gift with today’s youth. He currently teaches privately in the Dallas area and gives clinics whenever he can. He even has plans to develop a Summer Jazz Workshop in Dallas. He says”…music has to be shared to truly be enjoyed.” Anyone who listens to his Tenor saxophone would have to agree. Carrol was a 2006 finalist in the Texas Commission for the Arts “State Musician” recognition. He was also named the 2007 Sammons Center Jazz Artist of the Year. He is also a 2014 Dallas Observer nominee for Best Jazz Act. Shelley has been on tour with multi-platinum artist, Sheryl Crow. This has lead to many endorsements and various national TV appearances.
Stephen Aruajo- Percussion Instructor
Bio coming soon.