NIU Alum Earns Mr. Holland's Opus Award

Readers are likely familiar with the 1995 major motion picture "Mr. Holland's Opus," which featured Richard Dreyfus as Glenn Holland, the composer-turned-school music teacher who discovers how meaningful teaching is. One year after the film's debut, the Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation was founded by the film's composer, Michael Kamen, as his commitment to music education. The foundation has become one of the United States' most significant resources in assisting needy school music programs with the instruments and resources they need to survive and flourish.

The Foundation added annual awards to their mission in 2003, and we are honored that William "Bill" Doolan, a 1972 graduate of the NIU School of Music, has received a 2010 Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation Award. Bill joins an elite group of music teachers who have demonstrated a strong commitment to music education and who meet stringent teaching and musical parameters in order to earn this noteworthy award.

Bill has been teaching for 31 years in the Kickapoo Area Schools in Viola, Wisconsin. While at NIU, Bill's advisor was composition professor Jan Bach, with whom Bill maintains regular contact.

Congratulations, Bill!

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