WT Band Alumni Spotlight: Tim Hicks


Tim Hicks

What years were you in the WT Band? When did you graduate?


What was your degree in?


Where are you living now and what are you doing?

I currently live in a suburb of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. At a little more than 136,000 people, CR is still one of the largest cities in Iowa. This is actually my third stint here. I first moved from the DFW area to here in 1999, moved to Arizona in 2005, back here in 2006, to Colorado in 2011, and back here in 2020 - just two months before the derecho that left us without power for more than a week. I've been working as a software product manager for a global banking and InsureTech company since 2017, and "retired" in April of this year. The quote marks are because my product cannot move forward until they can find a replacement for me. It's such a niche job that it's really difficult to find anyone with the qualifications and experience needed. In my retirement, I am a travel advisor. It's a whole lot more fun to put smiles on my clients' faces than to do your best work for less-than appreciative management!

Tell us about your family.

You might remember that I dated Susan Dunn, a young lady from San Angelo who was on the flag corps. She and I married in December of 1983 and had 2 sons and a daughter from that union. She and I divorced in 2007, after which I married my true soulmate and love of my life. Her name was Angie, and you can bet we got a lot of mileage out of her being "Angie Hicks" ... no, not THAT Angie Hicks (Angie's list, now Angi). Angie had two boys from her previous marriage, both of whom eventually changed their last names to match mine. They are now 28 and 25. Angie was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2009. Although she never allowed MS to define who she was, and we both did our best to live our best lives, she passed away from complications resulting from MS in June of 2023.

What instrument did you play?

French horn

What ensembles and student groups were you involved in while you were at WT?

Kappa Kappa Psi, marching band, jazz band

Tell us a favorite band memory that you have from your time at WT.

One of the stories that I still tell is how Erick Djerf would show up for Saturday morning marching practice in his bathrobe and slippers as a tacit protest to the early Saturday call. I also fondly remember the Horn Mafia. IYKYK.

Share with us what you miss most about your time at WT.

What I miss most about WT is ... well, a whole lot, actually. When you're fresh out of high school, you're really starting to figure out who you are as a person. I miss all of the amazing friends I had and made. I miss the smell of the FAB. I miss tubing down the middle of the street after snow & ice storms. I suppose I don't miss the lack of modern heating and air conditioning in Jarrett and Conner Halls back then.

Do you have a favorite memory or highlight that has happened for you since graduation?

In the mid- to late-1990s, I taught the Dallas/Ft. Worth chapter of the Nashville Songwriters Association International. Through them, I got to spend time with a number of pro songwriters and, even though I haven't yet written anything that's been chosen for recording, I did have a song on hold with a publishing company. I worked behind the scenes for pro songwriters who went to Washington DC to fight for songwriters' copyrights. That work landed me an invitation to a big party at Sony Nashville.

What did you learn from your time at WT?

I learned to open my eyes to all the possibilities that surrounded me. Musical, spiritual, vocational, social, and so much more!

What are some of your favorite musical memories?

Working with some of the great bandmasters! Not the least of whom was Dr. Garner. I think it was my last year of band camp when I was sitting in rehearsal, and some construction work was emitting what sounded like a musical note. Quick-witted Dr. Garner turned, looked at the band, and said, "Who knows what note that is?" I was the one to speak up and say that it was a concert-whatever it was.

Why did you come to WT?

5 years of summer band camp made it an easy choice for me. I knew the music program, and knew that WT was the place where I belonged.

What was your favorite band trip and why did you like it so much?

I was only on one band trip, and I didn't like it very much.

Do you have any advice for current WT students?

NEVER, EVER allow anyone to talk you out of your dreams and goals. What happens during these crucial years truly does steer what happens for the rest of your life.

What else would you like for us to know? (Career or family highlights, awesome memories, people who inspired you at WT etc.)

Although I only spent a year as a music major, I continue to be inspired by every music instructor who ever took me under their wings. The awesome memories come from not places and things, but the people who experienced them with me. And the cherry limeades from Mr. Burger, across Hwy 87 from Stafford Hall ... neither of which exist anymore.

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