Donshon Wilson was born and raised in East Cleveland, Ohio. Mr. Wilson has always had a passion for instrumental music. He attended East Cleveland City Schools from Elementary through High School. As a percussionist student he participated in Concert Band, Wind Symphony, private lessons, Rhythm Teens (jazz band) Shaw High School Marching Band and even created a stage band with a few friends. Needless to say, music has always been a part of his life.
Following high school, Mr. Wilson attended Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, where he obtained his Bachelors of Science in Psychology. There, he also became a member of the Marching Marauders and concert band and went on to become a Section Leader and legacy with the Marching Marauders. Following his degree completion, Mr. Wilson returned to East Cleveland with a friend to brag about how great his high school band was. As they marched down the street, he was heartbroken at the lack of participation, discipline and entertainment, a less than excellent version of his beloved band paraded down the street.
In 1997, Mr. Wilson returned to East Cleveland City Schools as a substitute teacher. It was in the same year that he began helping with the Marching Band percussion section at Shaw. Working with sub-par equipment, he turned students with no musical training into a disciplined unit of musicians and entertainers. By 2000, Mr. Wilson had become the Band Director of Shaw Marching Band.
Since 2000, Mr. Wilson has taken Shaw Band to an unimaginable level! He has taken students across America to participate in competitions, showcases and on many college campus tours. One of Mr. Wilson's greatest honors was to lead Shaw Marching band as they participated in the 2008 Musical Tribute to the Olympics in Beijing, China, of which only five American marching bands were selected to participate. During his time as the Director, Mr. Wilson has also led Shaw Band to over 200 first place competition victories, performances with music artists Common, Brandy, Machine Gun Kelly, Ray Jr., opened for Cleveland Cavaliers each home game with their performance as Q-Sticks, performed the national anthem at the Cleveland Indians Home Opener in 2008, opened as the introduction to General Colin Powell, one of three bands selected to participate in the Cleveland Cavaliers 2016 Championship Parade, opened for Hilary and Bill Clinton, selected by Congress woman Stephanie Tubbs Jones as "my band" and, selected to perform for Vice President Joe Biden and President Barack Obama at his Cleveland rally in 2010, to name a few!
Mr. Wilson is a dedicated educator who encourages students to achieve greatness despite the odds that they may encounter. He consistently provides motivational speeches to students and challenges participants to believe in themselves as he believes in each of them. In 2007, Mr. Wilson created Music Through the Streets to support student musicians through college and to encourage middle/high school students to explore and introduce them to instrumental music.
In 2008, Mr. Wilson obtained his Master's in Educational leadership from The American Inter-continental University. Currently, he is the Director of Communications & Technology for East Cleveland City Schools and the Marching Band Director for Shaw High School.
Hear from alumni of the MTTS program in a special collection put together in reflection of the positive influence Mr. Wilson has been throughout the years.