Director of Bands

Todd M. Manson
Mr. Manson has been the Director of Bands at Ola High School since the school's opening in 2006. In the short history of Ola High School, the band program has taken hold as one of the strongest in Henry County. Originally from Port Charlotte, Florida, Mr. Manson holds a Bachelors degree in Music Education from Troy University (2001), and Master's in Music Education from the University of Georgia (2007).
Before serving as Ola High School's inagural band director, Mr. Manson spent five years at Jonesboro High School in Clayton County, Ga.: two years as the Assistant Director of Bands and three years as Fine Arts Department Chair and Director of Bands. Mr. Manson received a citation of excellence from the National Band Association in 2004 when the JHS Wind Symphony performed at the Southeastern United States Band Clinic. In 2005, he was recognized as the Star Teacher for JHS and was also selected for inclusion in the 2005-2006 edition of "Who's Who in American Education."
The Ola High School Bands have continually earned top honors at concert, marching, and GMEA sanctioned events. The Ola High School Marching Band was Bands of America Finalist and Class AA Champion at the 2011 Atlanta Super-Regional, and Bands of America Finalist and 2nd Place in Class AA at the 2013 Powder Springs Regional. The Ola Marching Band has had the privilege of performing at the Magic Music Days Parade in Orlando, Florida (2008), Cherry Blossom Festival at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. (2010), Tournament of Champions at Western Carolina University (2010 & 2011), and BOA regional at Jacksonville State University (2012). Finally, the Marching Mustangs had the great honor in marching in the 2012 New Year's Day Parade in London, England. On the concert stage, the Ola High School Symphonic Band and Wind Symphony consistently earn superior ratings at Large Group Performance Evaluations. Most recently, the OHS Wind Symphony was invited to perform at the Kennesaw State University's Concert Band Invitational (2014).
In addition to his many responsibilities as band director, Mr. Manson serves as a percussion performer, clinician, writer, and arranger throughout the Southern United States. Furthermore, Mr. Manson has a long-standing relationship with DCI and WGI performing ensembles. He has had prior memberships in the Magic of Orlando, Spirit of Atlanta, and Escape Indoor Percussion Ensemble. Mr. Manson holds professional affiliations with MENC, NBA, Percussive Arts Society, and GMEA.
Mr. Manson resides in McDonough, Georgia with his wife, Deborah, his son Ethan, his daughter Avery, and his adventurous dogs, Gracie and Jack.

Assistant Director of Bands

Jamie McDonald
Originally born in Mission Viejo, California, Mr. James McDonald moved to Hickory, North Carolina at a young age. Upon his arrival in North Carolina, Mr. McDonald became very interested in compositional studies, musical performance, and music education. Mr. McDonald currently holds a bachelors degree in Music Education with a concentration in Commercial & Electronic Music from Western Carolina University (2016).
While at Western Carolina University Mr. McDonald worked with the award winning Pride of the Mountains Marching Band, serving as their visual coordinator for his last two years as a student, and even received the Bandsman of the Year award upon his final year on their instructional staff. During this time he travelled with the group to Bands of America Regionals and national championships, as well as the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Additionally, Mr. McDonald has performed with various ensembles at WCU, including the Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band, Tuba/Euphonium Ensemble, Catamount Singers & Electric Soul, and the Western Carolina Jazz Ensemble.
Outside of his attendance at WCU, Mr. McDonald has been an active member of the Drum Corps International performance activity. Performing for a total of four summers, Mr. McDonald toured the country and competed with two world class organizations: Spirit of Atlanta and Cadets Drum & Bugle Corps. As a member of these two world class organizations, Mr. McDonald was the recipient of multiple awards for displaying character and leadership including Veteran Member of the Year (Spirit), Rookie of the Year (Cadets), and a Distinguished Service award in 2015 for his work as a section leader with the Cadets. Mr. McDonald has also been an active recording artist in his time outside of school - recording, mixing, and writing various full length studio albums.
Currently, Mr. McDonald is a visual technician with the Boston Crusaders Drum & Bugle Corps and is an active member of NafME National Association of Music Educators), NCMEA (NC Music Educators Association), TMEA (Texas Music Educators Association), and is an alumni of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. Mr. McDonald is looking forward to being a future resident of McDonough, GA, and enjoys running, writing, reading, and watching films.