Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame is the highest recognition given to those individuals who make a significant contribution to the Carolina Winter Ensemble Association, and who have in some way influenced the course of our history. Their contribution may be made through leadership, adjudication or instruction. Regardless of the vessel of their work, these people represent dedication, determination and a commitment to serving others through promoting education in the performing arts. As an organization, we thank members of the Hall of Fame for their outstanding contributions to the circuit and the performing arts.

CWEA will accept nominations beginning November 1, 2018. Click here to learn more about the nomination and induction process.

Michael Gray

Michael Gray is an acclaimed Impressionist painter with representation in 6 galleries throughout the United States. His paintings can be found in government, corporate and private collections throughout the world. Gray was a charter member of the Governor's "Canvas the Arts" committee and a founding member of the Daedelus Workshop Theater and On Stage Theater.

Gray's involvement in winter guard in the Carolinas can be traced back to its roots. He has served as designer, consultant and/or clinician for many notable units and a host of circuit champions. He held the post of the first Chief Judge and Judge Coordinator in the circuit.

Winter Guard International selected Gray as its first judge from the Carolinas. He would serve as Ensemble Analysis Facilitator for more than three years. Michael's clinics at WGI's SPINFEST were among the top rated and he has conducted designer and judges training clinics throughout the US, England, Japan and the Netherlands. His judging assignments include Drum Corps International finals, Bands of America regionals and finals, WGI world championships, and the Japanese Drum Corps and Marching Band Championships.

Mr. Gray is a resident of and maintains a studio in Charleston, South Carolina, where he is a longtime collaborator with the Wando HS band.

Paul Jackson Jr.

Inducted 2013

Paul Jackson's musical experience began as a student at Gilbert High School, where he played piano and trombone, and continued into the Cadets of Bergen County where he marched for three seasons, including their 1990 DCI World Championship season. It was there he met Mark Sylvester, and developed a strong desire to follow in the footsteps of the acclaimed Drill Designer. He then went on to serve as a faculty member for the Carolina Crown Drum & Bugle Corps of Fort Mill, SC.

During his 18 years of teaching, he served students from several schools spanning the Carolinas, including his most recent position as Director of Bands at Providence High School. Under Paul’s leadership, the Providence High School Band Program received numerous Superior Ratings, Grand Championship Awards, and other top honors. Paul was intricately involved in the Providence Winter Ensembles, including jazz band, winter guard, winter percussion, and school musical productions. He was also selected to direct the 9th/10th All-District Band, which he described as one of the best experiences of his life.

Though we lost him in the winter of 2012 to his battle with cancer, his memory lives on in the souls of the friends, family, and students he touched over the course of his life.

Jay Poole

Jay began his involvement in the colorguard activity in 1977 at Trinity High School where he was a member of the Marching Band until 1980. After high school, Jay marched with the Vagabonds Drum and Bugle Corps for two seasons and then with Avant Garde Drum and Bugle Corps where he was awarded outstanding member of the colorguard in 1983. After aging out of Drum Corps in 1984, Jay began teaching guard at Trinity High School and then at Cummings High School in Burlington, NC. Jay remained on staff at Cummings until 1989 when Jay was invited back to Trinity High School to become the colorguard instructor and remained on staff there until 2005.

Jay and Lenny Westmoreland collaborated to produce East Lincoln High School’s winterguard Cheval in the late 1980s and out of that program, they developed Aubreata. After several successful seasons including a fourth place finish in WGI finals in 1993, Jay focused on developing the winter program at Trinity with Jeremy Dale (a former Trinity student and marching member of Aubreata). In the late 1980s, Jay, Mike Gray, and Lenny Westmoreland recognized the need for a competition venue in the Carolinas and the three long-time friends collaborated to form the first winterguard circuit in the area. After several transformations, the current circuit, CWEA, was formed and Jay became the president in its second year of existence.

Jay consulted with several competitive groups including Aria Winterguard, West Forsyth High School Winterguard and the Northwest Guilford Indoor Percussion Ensemble. In his life outside colorguard, Jay is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Social Work Department at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Jay reduced his involvement in the activity to pursue his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Cultural Foundations.

Jay is delighted to see the growth of CWEA and above all, he is totally blown away by the talent and dedication of the performers, their instructors, and the parents who are involved in this life changing activity. Jay extends his deep appreciation to the CWEA Board of Directors for all of their incredibly hard work and for this wonderful honor!

Lenny Westmoreland

Mr. Westmoreland began his color guard career with his high school marching band, Northwest Guilford High School, in 1980 and has never looked back. He performed with the Pride of Cincinnati in 1986 and since then he has instructed numerous color guard programs throughout the Southeast. He is a graduate of Western Carolina University with a degree in Interior Design.

A student and teacher from the Carolinas, Mr. Westmoreland took his first winter guard, East Lincoln Cheval, to a WGI regional in 1987 and then to the WGI World Championships in 1990. In 1991, he formed and instructed the Aubreata Winter Guard. Aubreata was the first winter guard from North or South Carolina to make finals at the WGI World Championships, placing 4th in Independent A in 1993. Since then, Mr. Westmoreland has been the driving impetus behind numerous successful winter programs including Carolina Visual Productions in 2003, Etude Winter Guard and Scotland High School, both in 2006. Scotland High School was the 2006 Scholastic A class Silver Medalist and Etude was the 2006 Independent A Champion.

Mr. Westmoreland began teaching at Croatan High School in 2002. In 2003 Croatan High School was a WGI World Championships Scholastic A finalist and promoted to Open class where they were a WGI World Championships Semi-finalist in 2004. In 2005, Croatan High School was the WGI World Championships Scholastic Open Silver Medalist. In 2006 Croatan High School began competing in Independent Open where they were the WGI World Championships Independent Open Champions and were subsequently promoted to Independent World for the 2007 season. In 2005 Mr. Westmoreland also began writing marching band drill. His clients include Croatan, East Lincoln, Scotland, and Wakefield High Schools.

Stacey Miller

Inducted 2011

Stacey Miller's participation as a performer and a designer spans over 30 years. He started his career as a member of the Hoke County Marching Band color guard and has gone on to teach dozens of programs throughout the southeast. Stacey was a member of the 1984 Rosemont Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps color guard as well as the guard instructor for the Bands of America Grand National Champions Rocky Mount High School.

He oversaw successful programs at Carolina Forest HS in Myrtle Beach, SC; Gaffney HS, in Gaffney SC; James F. Byrnes HS in Duncan, SC; Northwestern HS in Rock Hill, SC; Olympic HS in Charlotte, NC; Scotland HS in Laurinburg, NC; Traveler's Rest HS in Traverler's Rest, SC; Colleton County HS in Walterboro, SC; and Goose Creek HS in Goose Creek, SC.

Stacey served CWEA in various board and appointed positions, where he worked as a constant advocate for the region's winter programs and most importantly the individual students.