Adjunct Staff

Miguel Castro
Percussion Coordinator

Miguel studied music from 1977 to 1983 at the “Conservatorio Nacional de Música” in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic earning a Master’s Degree in Music Performance. After that, he went to New York to study at Drummers Collective International in 1984-85 where he had the opportunity to study with some of the world’s leading percussionists including Steve Gadd, Doug Allen, and Frank Malabé.

In 1989, Miguel moved to Germany where he played in numerous Latin American, jazz, pop and chamber groups as well as pursuing an extensive recording career. He did tours throughout Europe with various groups and performers, amongst them the Puerto Rican Salsa star Marvin Santiago. Miguel has been a recording artist with ARC Music record label since 1992 and has produced 17 Compact Discs since then. He has played in various orchestras (Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional of Dominican Republic, Swiss Philharmonic Orchestra, Carol Morgan Operatic Society, Orquesta Sinfónica de Maracaibo), and currently performs with The Macon Symphony Orchestra in Macon, Georgia and the Ocmulgee Symphony Orchestra in the Middle Georgia area.

In 1992, he returned to the U.S. where he has continued as an active performer as well as a teacher of all percussion disciplines. He served as Director of Percussion Studies at Mercer University in Macon for eight years. At the present time, he serves as Director of Percussion Studies and Jazz Band at Middle Georgia College in Cochran, Georgia since the beginning of the Instrumental Music program (established in 1998 by Mr. Louis Foster, Director of Bands). Mr. Castro is also currently the Percussion Coordinator of the Houston County School System. He is regularly in demand as a percussion clinician (Percussive Arts Society International Convention, Georgia Music Educators Association Conference, Georgia Percussive Arts Society Conference, and Southeastern United States Band Clinic), adjudicator, composer, arranger and recording artist, maintaining a busy schedule in and outside of the United States.

Shawn Smith
Cologuard Director

Shawn Smith, Colorguard Director, is originally from Springfield,TN. He went to the University of TN at Chattanooga majoring in Music Education. He later became the colorguard instructor for the marching Mocs for 8 seasons. He has taught numerous colorguard programs throughout southeastern TN and Middle GA where he was the colorguard instructor for Mercer University for 5 seasons. Shawn has been the choreographer for several Winterguards presently being the lead choreographer for Chimera Winterguard. He has marched with the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps placing 4th with the corps and 3rd within the colorguard caption at DCI. He has also marched with Chimeras World Guard placing among the top 15 at WGI. Shawn has 23 years of colorguard experience and returns to Houston County for his 6th season.

Ashley Godbee
Visual Specialist

Mrs. Godbee received her undergraduate degree from Mercer University and is currently pursuing her graduate degree at Georgia College. Ashley was the previous Assistant Director of Bands at Perry High School and former Director of Bands at Gray Station Middle School where her bands have received Superior Ratings at the GMEA Large Group Performance Evaluation. She is currently the Associate Director of Bands at Bonaire Middle School. She has performed in the Chicago Symphony Hall for the Percy Grainger Festival and for The Temptations. She has also performed at state conventions such as the Georgia Music Educators Association and for International conventions such as the Midwest Clinic in Chicago. Ashley is an active freelance performer and is currently a member of Wellston Winds, Georgia Big Band and Celebration.

Luke Ross
Percussion Assistant

Luke Ross is a born and raised Georgia native. Luke is a well-rounded percussionist with classical training from Middle Georgia State University. While at Middle Georgia, Luke has been featured in Middle Georgia’s “Finding Greatness” article for his outstanding works as a percussion instructor at Northside High School in Warner Robins, GA. Since Luke has been a percussion instructor in Houston County, the percussion sections, under his instruction (drums and mallets), have competed and placed first in every competition they have been to. Luke is also an international competition artist. He competed at the 2017 and 2019 Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC), and was ranked in the collegiate rudimental snare drum category as being the 5th (2017) and 4th (2019) best collegiate rudimental snare drummer in the world. When Luke is not teaching or performing in competitions, he is a percussionist for Theatre Macon on Cherry Street in Macon, GA. Luke has done many productions at Theatre Macon such as: Peter and the Star Catcher, Matilda the Musical, Disney’s Mary Poppins the Musical, 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Sister Act, and Elf the Musical. Luke is also a Free-Lancing musician and has performed with groups like: Robert Lee Coleman Band, Company of Crows, Barrelhouse, Tres Hombres, Big Daddy and Company, and Luke Martin. Luke’s playing abilities have become very diverse considering the genres he has performed include: Rock, Bluegrass, Funk, Jazz, Reggae, Hip Hop, Country, and Musical Theatre. Luke is also a featured endorsee for Croaker Percussion. Luke’s endorsement and support of Croaker Percussion’s Brush Box and Woody series tom boxes landed Luke a feature in the December 2020 issue of Modern Drummer Magazine.

Alexis Brown
Percussion Assistant

My name is Alexis Brown. Originally, I am from Wichita Falls, TX and moved to GA upon graduating high school in 2014. I came to GA to pursue my producing and teaching careers. I graduated from Middle Georgia State University with both my AA in Music and BA in Contemporary Musicianship. I plan to further my education and recieve my Master's in Music Ed. This is my first full school year as an Percussion Instructer at HoCo and loving every minute. I feel so welcomed everytime i step into the band room. These kids are amazing. Can't wait to see what the future holds at HoCo.

Go Bears! SUDA!

Dillon Watkins

Dillon Watkins is incredibly excited to join the Black and Silver Brigade staff for the 2021-2022 season! Dillon is the current music teacher at Hilltop Elementary School in Bonaire, Georgia and is the former assistant director of athletic bands at Jones County High School and the former director of bands at Tattnall Square Academy. Mr. Watkins has been on staff with Mercer University Athletic Bands, the Wesleyan School, ALLIANCE Drum and Bugle Corps, Jones County High School, Forsyth Central High School, Georgia Military College Preparatory School, and Genesis Drum and Bugle Corps. His drum corps career began as a marching member in 2013 with the seven-time world champions, Cavaliers of Rosemont, Illinois. Soon after aging out of the Cavaliers, Dillon began teaching scholastic and independent ensembles throughout the Southeast and Southwest regions of the country. He joined ALLIANCE as a member of the visual staff in 2015 during which the corps placed second in DCA A-class Finals. In 2016, Dillon returned to ALLIANCE as the assistant caption head for both the brass and visual captions and helped lead the brass caption to a DCA Open Class finals finish. Mr. Watkins joined the Jones County band staff in the Spring of 2016 and helped lead the band to competitive success in four different divisions. Most recently, Mr. Watkins was appointed as the brass caption head for Genesis Drum and Bugle Corps in Austin, Texas beginning in the Fall of 2019. Genesis competes as part of Drum Corps International’s World Class Division and can be seen performing/competing throughout the country each summer. During the 2021 summer, Genesis Brass had the opportunity to perform and record with FivE Quartet as well as conduct masterclasses with Aubrey Logan and Fran Kick.

Dillon holds an Associate of Arts degree from Georgia Military College and a Bachelor of Music Education from Mercer University. Dillon has studied conducting under Dr. Douglas Hill, Dr. Stanley Roberts, Maestro Adrian Gnam, Dr. Jamie Nix, Scott Boerma, and Craig Kirchhoff. While an undergraduate at Mercer, he studied trumpet with Jonathan Swygert, Michael Tiscone, Bill Denton, and Dr. Ramon Vasquez. Mr. Watkins has had the privilege of performing with the Mercer University Wind Ensemble, Mercer Brass Quintet, Mercer Trumpet Ensemble (MUTE), Mercer Brass choir, Mercer University Orchestra, Mercer Athletic Bands, and Middle Georgia Choral Association. Notable performances for Mr. Watkins include playing for Govenor Nathan Deal’s personal Christmas party with the Mercer Brass Quintet and performing as a member of the pit for Mercer University’s production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Oklahoma!” As a conductor, Dillon has been featured as an associate conductor of the Mercer University Wind Ensemble, conductor of the Mercer Trumpet and Brass Choirs, and has served as a chamber ensemble coach for the brass quintets. Dillon has also been featured as a guest conductor for the Jones County High School Symphonic Band.

Dillon is an active performer, adjudicator, clinician, and conductor in the middle Georgia area. Mr. Watkins is extremely involved as a visual designer and educator with pageantry arts ensembles throughout the Southeast and Southwest. His show designs have been awarded top honors at competitions throughout the region. Mr. Watkins currently resides in Bonaire, Georgia with his wife, son, and their dog, Kona. Mr. and Mrs. Watkins are both educators in Houston County at Hilltop Elementary and Houston County High School, respectively.