The Wisconsin School Music Association Marching Band Hall of Fame is intended to recognize the contributions made by individuals to the marching activity in Wisconsin and is open to any person that has made a significant contribution.
Nominations will accepted for the 2024 Marching Band Hall of Fame during April. Additional information and nomination form can be found here.
2023 Hall of Fame Inductee: Susan Halloway (1953 – 2015)
Known for her dedicated work as a music educator, a pioneer in the marching arts, and a beloved mentor and friend, Susan Halloway leaves behind a lasting legacy. Over the course of her life, her contributions and efforts paved the way for many others in the marching community.
Halloway graduated from Whitefish Bay High School in 1972 and received a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Following her college graduation, she spent her entire 33 teaching career at Sauk Prairie High School from 1979 until her retirement in 2012. At Sauk Prairie, Halloway started the competitive marching program which has participated annually in the WSMA State Marching Band Championships from 1985 to present. During that span, Sauk Prairie regularly finished in the top three places and earned 1st place in Class C in 1991. Other performances of note with the Sauk Prairie High School band include the St. Petersburg Festival of States, the 1992 Clinton/Gore presidential campaign rally at the state capitol rotunda and the 2008 Thanksgiving Day Parade in Chicago.
Halloway was a part of history as a trailblazer for women participating in the marching arts. She was a role model and pioneer in the marching arts by serving as a staff member for the all-female corps, the CapitolAires. The CapitolAires’ mission included providing young women with the same experiences as the all-male corps. As a CapitolAires staff member, Halloway toured the United States extensively to participate in several competitions such as the Marion Open, Boston Open, Drum Corps Midwest and Drum Corps International including the 1st DCI Championships held at UW-Whitewater.
Halloway strove for inclusivity, equality and excelled in her work with at-risk and students with exceptional needs. Her excitement and passion for music education transferred to the students on a daily basis and motivated their rehearsals and performances. She ensured that every student felt a sense belonged while inspiring them to take chances and set high expectations for themselves. She also used that same passion to help mentor young teachers and assist in building other programs throughout the state.
Following her retirement, Halloway passed away in 2015 following a brief battle with a rare form of cancer. The Sauk Prairie music department’s past mantra of “It’s the journey, not the destination” personifies Halloway’s teaching career and life.