Ken Hakoda serves as associate professor of music at Kansas Wesleyan University, where he teaches choir, music education and music theory classes. He is founder of the KWU Chamber Orchestra. He also directs choir at St. John’s Lutheran Church and regularly serves as music director at the Salina Community Theatre. Hakoda is also known for his talent as a composer with over 20 works to his credit. He has won a number of awards and honors as a composer, including the 1998 Claude T. Smith Phi Beta Mu Composition Contest, the 1996 MMEA Collegiate Composition Contest and a Departmental Distinction at St. Olaf College. Hakoda also received the 2003 Outstanding Young Band Director Award from Kansas Bandmasters Association and was named as the 2014 Kansas Federated Music Club "Composer/Conductor of the Year." Hakoda hails from a unique musical background, having received extensive training in choral and instrumental education as well as theory/composition. At St. Olaf College, he earned a bachelor of arts degrees in choral music education, instrumental music education and theory/composition, for which he was awarded with the departmental distinction. While at St. Olaf, Hakoda studied voice with Dan Dressen, saxophone with Ruben Haugen, composition with Tim Mahr and Peter Hamlin, and conducting with Tim Mahr and Steve Amandson. Hakoda continued his education at Wichita State University as a graduate assistant, where he served as the director of the Shocker Pep Band. He earned master of music degrees in instrumental conducting, studying with Victor Markovich and Harry Davison and theory/composition, studying with Dr. Walter Mays and Dr. Dean Roush. Hakoda earned an Ed.D. in music education from Teachers College, Columbia University.