Fine Arts Center
Wednesday, August 28
FAC Partners meeting immediately following
Fine Arts Center Announces New Director
Vee Popat named the new Director of the Fine Arts Center!
Mr. Vee Popat brings 17 years of experience in public school education to the Fine Arts Center, serving as a band director for the first 9 years of his career before moving into the administrative level. He holds a B.A. in Music Education from Virginia Tech, an M.M. in Jazz Education from the University of Miami (FL), and an M.S. in Educational Administration from the University of Scranton. The bulk of Mr. Popat’s career as a music educator was in the award-winning programs of the Randolph Township Schools in Randolph, NJ. Concert and Jazz Ensembles under his direction received consistent Gold and Superior Ratings, and the Randolph High School Jazz Ensemble served as the representative student ensemble at the 2013 Jazz at Lincoln Center Band Directors’ Academy. Mr. Popat has served as the director of New Jersey Honor Ensembles multiple times, working with both Junior High and High School Concert and Jazz Ensembles at the Area and Region levels. He also was an Adjunct Faculty member of the prestigious Newark Academy Jazz Program, President of the North Jersey Area Band, and President of Region I of the New Jersey Jazz Education Association.
In 2011, Mr. Popat assumed leadership of the Randolph Visual and Performing Arts Program, serving as the Supervisor of Music, Art, Dance, Family/Consumer Science, and Mass Media programs. The Randolph Music Program was consistently named to the “Best Communities for Music Education” list by the NAMM Foundation. In 2013, he took over the Visual and Performing Arts Program in the West Essex Regional School District and quickly advanced to the role of West Essex Middle School Principal. Under his leadership, the school was named a 2018 “Spotlight School” by the New Jersey Schools to Watch Program. Mr. Popat has twice presented at the New Jersey Association for Middle-Level Education Conference and has also presented at the 2017 Association for Middle-Level Education National Conference in Philadelphia, PA.
Mr. Popat maintains an active teaching and performing career as a professional saxophonist. He and his wife Heather, a fellow educator, have three children - Nate (10), Charlotte (10), and Addison (3). They are excited to join their family in Greenville!
Fine Arts Center Announces New Assistant Director
Kaci Cotter named the new Assistant Director of the Fine Arts Center!
Kaci is a 2007 graduate of the University of South Carolina where she received her Bachelor of Music Education and Horn Performance. While at the USC she served as the Drum Major of the “Mighty Sound of the Southeast,” the USC Marching Band. Kaci later earned a Masters of Education in School Administration and Supervision from Converse College in 2013.
Prior to her arrival at D.R. Hill, Kaci served as the Director of Bands at Dutch Fork Middle School in Lexington, SC. During her tenure at D.R. Hill Kaci served as the Director of Bands where her program enrollment annually averaged 230 students and earned top ratings at local, state and national adjudicated events. Kaci was named Teacher of the Year, served in numerous leadership roles and was named to Who’s Who Among American Teachers.
Bands under Kaci’s baton have consistently received Superior ratings at local, state, regional and national competitions while receiving the highest honor possible from the South Carolina Band Directors Association, the Outstanding Performance Award. She is an active adjudicator and clinician for concert and marching events throughout South Carolina. She presented at the 2019 South Carolina Music Educators Association Conference in Columbia, SC and will present this November at the North Carolina Music Educators Association Conference in Raleigh, NC.
Kaci maintains professional affiliations with the National Band Association, National Association for Music Educators, and the South Carolina Music Educators Association. She currently resides in Greer, SC with her husband, Thomas, their two children, Henry and Clara, and their cat, Abigail.
This new partnership between the Fine Arts Center and the Peace Center’s Community Impact program gives up-and-coming young artists the opportunity to showcase their skills and perform in a professional setting.
Visual Arts STudents take home over 100 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards!
Below are the Fine Arts Center stats from 2019 Scholastic Art Awards in the SOUTHEAST REGION-AT-LARGE:
Gold Keys - 32 artworks and 4 portfolios
Silver Keys - 38 artworks and 2 portfolios
Honorable Mentions - 53 artworks and 2 portfolios
Regional One Earth Award - 1
102 Pine Knoll Drive
Greenville, SC 29609
Telephone: (864) 355-2550
Fax: (864) 355-2579