Thomas Dan


Thomas currently serves as the executive director of the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra.  The band holds post at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.  Prior to his current appointment he served as the co-chair of the Jazz Studies Program at UMKC’s Conservatory of Music and Dance with Bobby Watson. Thomas was the chief architect of a new model for jazz education which garnered national attention for the program and he led a team of Kansas City Jazz royalty.  Under Thomas’ leadership the program grew immensely in both quality, number and in annual giving.  He taught and directed the 11 O’Clock Jazz band.  Among the many accolades the band performed at the 2012 Jazz Education Network convention and was acknowledged for outstanding performance as well as being selected to perform for the Missouri Music Educator’s Association’s 78th Annual In-Service Workshop/Conference.  Thomas’ contributions to education have been recognized with inductions in to Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers (3 times) as well as being awarded the Muriel McBrien Kauffman Excellence in Teaching Award (2017), given to one Conservatory faculty member, and twice recognized by the Missouri Music Educator’s Association.