Homer High School
For 24 years, beginning 1983 with 7 years in Nenana City K-12 Public Schools, through 17 years at Homer High, Middle and Elementary Schools, as well as McNeil Canyon Elementary School, William Searle, “with his incredible musical skill, coupled with the gift of teaching, a sense of humor, and long hours of his own time” positively impacted over 400 students in 10 bands.
His direction and leadership touched Middle School Bands, High School Concert, Jazz, Pep and Honor Bands, in addition to State Solo/Ensembles, School Musicals, Kenai Peninsula Orchestras, and International Music Festival Competitions. William Searle, whose “love for kids and his passion to see them succeed,” along with “high expectations and enthusiasm” led his students and him to receive numerous awards and recognitions over the years, such as: Bronze Medals (1986,1994) and Silver Medals (1998, 2003) at the Honolulu International Musical Festivals; Recognition by the Alaska State Legislature (1986, 1994); Homer High School Teacher of the Year (1996); Golden Apple Award, Kenai Peninsula Borough School District (1999); BP Teacher of Excellence Award (2002); and Homer Kachemak Rotary Club Outstanding Educator Award (2003).
William Searle retired in 2005, with his numerous students succeeding and taking “pride in their music” while the “entire community embraced the program, packing theater performances and collaborating in outreach concerts.”