Gibs Flock Character of excellence

When Mr. Flock announced his intention to pass the leadership of the band on to Mr. Acenowr, I spent some time reflecting on what the marching band experience has meant to our children, our family, our friends in the community and in our school district.
I thought the time and dedication of Mr. Flock needed to be recognized in a way that honors his hard work and commitment to our children and our community.
Through our time with Marching band, on several occasions I have been aware of how Mr. Flock has invited students into marching band not because of their musical talent or marching ability, but rather because a student needed a place to belong, a place to fit in and feel valued.
I have observed how Mr. Fock has met each student “where they are” and how he has given some students a second chance that others may have given up on.
Mr. Flock, through his leadership style, created a culture where “everyone matters”. And when necessary has taken kids aside to tell them “you matter to this marching band, and you matter to me”
I have observed children who are on the fringe of social dynamics, students who have struggled with academics, self-esteem, and behavioral issues. I have watched Gibs draw these students into this organization and give them a place to belong. When confronted with this observation, Gibs will say, it’s not just me, I have a team. To this I say, it is Gibs who led and created the culture of this team, by his example.
This said, The Gibs Flock Character of Excellence Scholarship is to be awarded to a graduating ESM senior, not based on musical ability, not based on spinning or marching ability, but based on character. The scholarship should be awarded to a student who has demonstrated compassion and acceptance of others and who shows extraordinary potential for making positive influences in their school and community in their future.
The intention of the scholarship award is to be a reflection of the character and of selfless giving that Gibs has shared with this organization in his 29 years of service.

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Organizer and beneficiary

Jeff Haines 
East Syracuse, NY
Derec Koukides 
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