Photo of John LockeDr. John Locke, director of bands and conductor of the UNCG Wind Ensemble, has been awarded the Marion Stedman Covington Distinguished Professorship in Music.

Established in 1988 and launched in 1992, this professorship was the second endowed professorship established at UNCG, and the first funded through the School of Music, Theatre and Dance.

Since 1982, Locke has directed UNCG Summer Music Camp, which hosts more than 1,750 students each summer and boasts the honor of being “America’s Most Popular” music camp. Under his direction, the UNCG Wind Ensemble has released 16 commercially available compact discs that have received widespread acclaim.

In 2003, Locke received the “Outstanding Teacher Award” from the School of Music, Theatre and Dance. In 2007 he received the “Old North State Award” from Gov. Mike Easley, and in 2012, Gov. Bev Perdue awarded him the “Order of the Long Leaf Pine,” one of the highest honors a governor can bestow on a North Carolina citizen who has contributed more than 30 years of service to the state.

On receiving the professorship (effective Jan. 1), Locke said, “I am truly humbled to learn of this prestigious honor and it came as a complete surprise. My sincere thanks to Dean Alexander, Provost Perrin and Chancellor Brady for their trust and support. Ironically, I’ve been at UNCG so long that I knew Marion Stedman Covington for whom this Distinguished Professorship is named. Dean Robert Blocker introduced me to Mrs. Covington in 1983 and she graciously donated all of the T-shirts for the Summer Music Camp students in our very first summer. She was a loyal supporter of music at UNCG over the years and it was the generosity of her family which established this endowment in her name.”