Our Faculty And Staff

At McCallum, the Fine Arts faculty and staff work continuously to refine and implement a rigorous fine arts curriculum that challenges students in all aspects of artistic endeavor from the creative to the technical. Dedicated teachers and accomplished artists in their own right, the talented members of the McCallum Fine Arts faculty provide invaluable guidance, instruction and inspiration to young artists of tomorrow.

Michael Garrison Principal

Michael Garrison grew up in Bulverde, Texas, north of San Antonio, the second oldest of ten children. His family is committed to education - six of the ten children chose education as a profession. Mr. Garrison attended Southwest Texas State University (Texas State) and graduated with a major in Business Education and a minor in Physical Education. He coached and taught at a junior high school and an intermediate school before moving to his first high school, J. Frank Dobie High School in Pasadena, Texas. There he was the Business Department Chair and coached football and basketball for fourteen years.

Mr. Garrison earned an Administrative Certification at the University of Houston, Clear Lake in 1996, and became an assistant principal at Rayburn High School in Pasadena ISD for two years. He moved to Austin in 1998 to serve as assistant principal at Dripping Springs High School and then James Bowie High School in AISD. In the Fall of 2003, he became principal at McCallum High School.

Mr. Garrison is married with two daughters, one nineteen and one thirteen. He enjoys sports and spending time with family. From Mr. Garrison, "I cannot say enough good things about our wonderful staff, students, parents, and community at McCallum. Go Knights!"

Kalyse McElveen Fine Arts Coordinator

Kalyse McElveen comes from a family of educators and knew early on that education would play a primary role in her career path. She holds a Master of Arts in Performing Arts Administration from New York University and a Bachelor of Music from Texas Tech University. During graduate school, Ms. McElveen interned in the Education Departments at the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and the Houston Symphony Orchestra.

Before joining the McCallum Fine Arts Academy, Ms. McElveen managed a multi-million dollar, ten-campus afterschool education program for the Del Valle Independent School District (ISD). In 2011, the program provided academic, enrichment, college readiness, and family engagement activities to over 1,800 students and 1,300 parents. She also led a community task force, which developed a five-year strategic plan for the program and provided a collaborative environment for stakeholder participation.

Prior to her most recent post in Del Valle ISD, Ms. McElveen directed middle and high school bands for five years in Texas public schools and worked and volunteered for several nonprofit education agencies in central Texas. Ms. McElveen joined the McCallum team in 2012.

Brazie Adamez Dance

Brazie Adamez has served as co-director of McCallum's growing Dance program for the past six years. A graduate of the University of Texas, Ms. Adamez is also a former member and officer of the renowned Kilgore College Rangerettes, with whom she traveled and performed extensively in the U.S. and abroad. She continues to perform professionally with Out on a Limb Dance Company and recently completed a four-year commitment as a member of the Rangerettes' Board of Directors. She currently serves on McCallum’s curriculum design committee as part of the district’s new "Creative Classroom" initiative designed to integrate fine arts into the academic classroom at all levels of education.

Bill Cauthern Visual Arts

Bill Cauthern is an accomplished sculptor, printmaker and art educator. He earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in sculpture and a minor in printmaking from the University of Texas at Austin in 1998, and received his All-Level Teaching Certification from UT Austin at the same time. An experienced educator, he has been a member the McCallum Visual Arts faculty since 2002, where he currently teaches sculpture, printmaking and Art I. His students have received numerous National and State level awards and have exhibited their work at various venues in Austin including the Austin Museum of Art, Bass Concert Hall, and the Davis Gallery.

Mr. Cauthern developed his early painting and drawing skills under the direction of Madelon Umlauf, focusing primarily on abstract oil and acrylic work. He later studied sculpture with the renowned sculptor Steve Daly and was eventually introduced to printmaking by Nigerian woodcutter Christopher Adejumo. Mr. Cauthern recognized his affinity for sculpture and printmaking through his work with these two artists and continues to specialize in both types of media today. In addition to being an artist and educator, family plays an important role in his life. He is happily married to his wife, Sabrina, and is a father to three children, Breana, William, and Ethan.

Andrew Clark Classical Guitar

A native of Canada, Andrew Clark relocated to Austin to join the McCallum Fine Arts Academy music faculty in Classical Guitar. Under his direction, the McCallum Classical Guitar Ensemble has repeatedly taken First Place in the National Classical Guitar Ensemble Competition, and his students have earned top honors in UIL Solo and Ensemble contests.

A Royal Conservatory of Music Silver Medalist, Mr. Clark attended The Glenn Gould School of The Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, graduating in 2003 with a Bachelor's Degree in Guitar Performance. That same year, he was selected for a full 2-year scholarship to continue his guitar studies at L'Escuela Nacional de la Musica in Havana, Cuba. He later earned a Masters Degree in Music Education with a concentration in guitar pedagogy from Columbus State University in Georgia.

Mr. Clark has attended and performed in international classical guitar symposia including Le Domaine Forget in Quebec, the Iserlohn Guitar Festival in Germany, and the Mediterranean Guitar Festival in Italy.

Joshua Denning Performance Theatre

Joshua Denning most recently appeared as Captain Von Trapp at Zilker Theatre this summer. At ZACH Theatre: Dr. Fine/ Dr. Madden in Next to Normal, “Angel” in RENT (for which he won the Austin Critics’ Table Award for Best Supporting Actor and the B. Iden Payne award for Outstanding Ensemble Performance) and Seaweed J. Stubbs in Hairspray. INTERNATIONAL CREDITS: The Lion King (Simba) Hamburg, Germany; We Will Rock You (Brit), Zurich, Switzerland; Best of Musical (Principle Soloist), Vienna, Austria. REGIONAL THEATRE: Carousel (Billy Bigelow), Mary Moody Northern Theatre; In The Blood (Reverend D), Altered Stages; Rent (Benny), The Weston Playhouse; Miss Saigon, Theater Under The Stars; West Side Story and A Little Night Music, The Human Race Theater Company. FILM: Tort (Clyde Walker), Convergence (Michael), Abrupt Decision (Aaron), Sick Daze, Down With Dave, Snipe Hunter and Bernie. OTHER THEATRE: Hot Summer Nights at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Stage One, The Kentucky Shakespeare Festival, and Seaside Music Theater. ADDITIONAL CREDITS: B.F.A. in Musical Theater from Wright State University.

Matt Ehlers Band

Matt Ehlers is Assistant Director of Bands/Percussion at McCallum and is the school's Teacher of the Year 2010-2011. While attending North Texas Ehlers was a member of their marching band drumline as well as their 14 time PASIC world champion indoor drumline.

Ehlers conducts Symphonic Band, steel pan and percussion ensembles, and co-directs the JV Full Orchestra. His ensembles have earned superior ratings at both UIL Concert and Sightreading and Solo and Ensemble competitions. Knights of Steel advanced steel band has had two high honors performing alongside Ray Holman at 2006 PASICS and at 2007 Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago.

Ehlers is an active performer and clinician around the greater Austin area, where he also co-coordinates two annual youth steel band camps.

Mary Ghazinezhadiansh Visual Arts

"Ms. Ghazi" earned a B.F.A. in Visual Arts Studies from the University of Texas at Austin with University Honors. Her emphasis was in Art Education with studio emphases in jewelry design, printmaking, and ceramics. Ms. Ghazi began her teaching career in the elementary classroom before transitioning to McCallum in 2000. She proudly holds the National Board Certification, which she earned in 2008. While at McCallum, the AISD Board of Trustees has recognized Ms. Ghazi for Outstanding Achievement in Providing Student Artists with Award-Winning Instruction in the years 2005 (2), 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2011. She is the proud parent of three daughters, the eldest a 2011 Academy graduate and another applying for Fall 2012.

Rachel Murray Dance

Rachel Murray is the most recent addition to the Dance faculty of the McCallum Fine Arts Academy. A former company member of the internationally acclaimed Mark Morris Dance Group, she performed with the group from 1988 until 2000. Ms. Murray has taught dance technique and Mark Morris repertory at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Skidmore College and UT Austin, where she earned a Master of Fine Arts in 2006. In addition, she has set repertory at Julliard, George Mason University, UT Austin and the Korean International Summer School of Dance. She is an avid Tango and Salsa dancer and a certified Pilates instructor.

Carol Nelson Band

Carol Nelson is Director of Bands at McCallum Fine Arts Academy. In July, she was sole recipient of the Texas Bandmasters Association 2011 Meritorious Achievement Award for Outstanding Commitment to Music Education. She has served as TMEA Region 18 band division chair, presented clinics at TMEA, and been organizer for the TMEA 4A All-State Band. She won the Denius UIL Sponsor Excellence Award for the State of Texas and has also been chosen as McCallum's Teacher of the Year several times. She received her bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Texas at Austin where she was a graduate assistant for the Longhorn Band and then began her teaching career here at McCallum in 1979.

Ricky Pringle Orchestra

Ricky Pringle, Director of Orchestras and Double Bass Ensembles has more than tripled orchestra enrollment during his 10 years at McCallum. Under his baton, string ensembles consistently earn UIL Sweepstakes awards and have had two performances at Carnegie Hall. Pringle studied double bass and holds Bachelor of Music and Music Education degrees from LSU. While in Louisiana, Pringle performed with the Baton Rouge Symphony, Baton Rouge Little Theatre, and was principal bassist with the Acadiana Symphony Orchestra. His teaching career began in the Woodlands in Houston, and he joined the Fine Arts Academy music faculty in 2001.

Pringle maintains a private studio of double bass students, and many of those, as well and his McCallum orchestra students, have earned positions in Texas All State ensembles and/or scholarships to college. He currently has Academy orchestra students who are college music majors at Mannes, Manhattan and NYU in New York; UT Austin and U. of Colorado at Boulder. Pringle himself continues to perform with many ensembles including Temple Symphony, Round Rock Symphony and Symphony of the Hills.

Jeff Rudy Band

Jeffrey Rudy is Associate Director of Bands at McCallum High School. Originally from Middletown, MD, he received an Artist Certificate in Piano Performance from the Peabody Conservatory Preparatory Program and his Bachelors Degree in Music (Applied Piano) from the University of Texas at Austin. His post-graduate conducting studies were done with Anthony Maiello and Col. Arnold Gabriel at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. Mr. Rudy directs the Concert Band and Color Guard, assists with the Marching Band, and teaches AP Music Theory and Piano within the Fine Arts Academy. Now in his 28th year of teaching, he remains active as a private piano instructor and accompanist in the Austin area.

Jeff Seckar-Martinez Visual Arts

Jeff Seckar-Martinez is originally from El Paso, Texas and holds a BFA degree in Studio Art and Illustration from The University of Arizona in Tucson and a BA in English Literature/Secondary Ed from The University of Texas, El Paso. For the past 14 of his 20 years in education, Seckar-Martinez has been teaching Advanced Drawing classes and is a Nationally Board Certified teacher working to nurture and develop creativity in his emerging student artists.  Throughout his career, Seckar-Martinez’s students have earned regional, state and national recognition for their work and many have gone on to pursue careers in the arts after graduating from such prestigious schools as Parsons, MICA, KCAI, and the School at the Art Institute of Chicago.  Seckar-Martinez has been invited to speak on behalf of the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers- Scholastic Arts at the National Art Education Convention, has served as the Austin ISD Secondary Art New Teacher Trainer, has been recognized as Austin High’s Teacher of the Year and is an accomplished artist exhibiting and selling work throughout Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Wisconsin and New York.  He currently lives in Austin with his wife Angie and daughters Addison and Chloe.

Karn Severson Technical Theatre

Karn Severson was born and raised in Minnesota, and earned her Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts from Hamline University in Saint Paul, Minnesota. She then earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Technical Production of Theatre from Florida State University, and worked at summer theatres in Minnesota and Maine when not in school. Some of her favorite productions have been Spring Awakening, Crimes of the Heart, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Dancing at Lughnasa, The Boys Next Door, and Tommy. Ms. Severson joined the McCallum faculty in 2013.

Georgeann Shockley Orchestra

Georgeann Shockley is the Assistant Director of Orchestras and Instructor of Piano at the McCallum Fine Arts Academy. She holds a Bachelor of Music Degree from Houghton College in Houghton, New York, and has pursued graduate studies in Violin Pedagogy and Literature at the University of Texas at Austin. She is an accomplished violinist and tenured member of both the Austin Symphony Orchestra and the Austin Lyric Opera Orchestra. This is Mrs. Shockley’s 22nd year in AISD and second year at the Fine Arts Academy. She is a well-respected musician and is currently Chairperson for the Orchestra UIL Solo and Ensemble Contest, AISD Orchestra Solo and Ensemble Contest, and the All-City Middle School and High School Orchestra festivals.

Carey West Visual Arts

Carey West is the newest member of the Visual Arts faculty at the McCallum Fine Arts Academy and McCallum High School. She oversees the Visual Arts Department's Advanced Placement Art History curriculum, as well as the Digital Photography and Ceramics courses. A ceramic artist with a wide range of interests and skills, Ms. West holds a B.A. in Visual Arts and a B.S. in Marine Biology from the Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida. She has been recognized as a member of the Artist in Residence program at the Mendocino Art Center in California, and has taught for the past eight years. In 2011, she will have completed the work towards National Board Certification.

Kate Wiley Piano/Music Theory

Kate Wiley a born and raised Austinite, is a graduate of Louisiana Tech University with a Bachelor of Arts in Vocal Performance with minors in Piano and Spanish. Beginning at the age of four, Kate took jazz, ballet, and tap lessons in the Austin School of Dance and later in the Shirley McPhail School of Dance. After moving to Mississippi at the age of 13, Kate continued her dancing career at Middleton School of Dance and participated in the Natchez Historic Pageant for five years dancing in the soiree and can-can.  During High School Kate choreographed and coached the “Little Waves Dance Team.”

At age 6, Kate began playing competitive piano, traveling all over the country competing in national and international competitions, bringing home numerous titles. Kate began teaching private piano lessons at the age of 16, preparing kids for competitive piano through sight reading, music theory, and technique.

Kate began singing at age four, and participated in over sixteen large scale musical productions. Throughout high school, Kate was the assistant children’s choir director in Natchez Mississippi, aiding in the coaching of dancing, acting, and singing for their musicals. Kate was also chosen to be a member of the Natchez Junior Opera Guild from 2001-2004.  In the summer of 2005, Kate was invited to tour all over Austria with singers from around the world (accompanied by the Vienna orchestra) to celebrate and pay tribute to Mozart’s 250th birthday. During her time in college, Kate was very involved in the choral department, participating in the Louisiana Tech Concert Choir for four years, while simultaneously participating in Louisiana Tech Chamber Singers, and Louisiana Tech Women’s Chorus.  Kate was also voted section leader by her peers for three years in all three choirs. Kate also participated in Louisiana Tech Opera Workshop, a collaboration of musical numbers where she played the role of Glinda from Wicked as well as a chorus member for Hairspray, Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Producers, The Full Monty, and Spamalot.  Kate is very excited about her opportunity at McCallum.