George Hopkins - DCI Hall of Fame
Inducted in 1997
A percussionist with the Crossmen in the mid-1970s, George Hopkins began to instruct as soon as he aged out. When he joined the Garfield Cadets in 1979, the corps was just beginning to flex its competitive muscle within DCI.
His direction helped lead the Cadets to their first DCI World Championship in 1983, the year he became the corps director.
Due to his vision, the corps has maintained its reputation for constantly stretching artistic boundaries and leading fans down new, uncharted avenues of creative endeavor. He has the satisfaction of seeing many of his earlier, "radical" concepts become regarded as "traditional" elements.
His tenure with Cadets has not always been an easy one. Through his creative approaches to problem-solving, he has staved off financial difficulties that threatened the corps existence. As DCI's former chair of the finance committee, he used his gifts to help DCI survive and grow. The United States Scholastic Band Association, an organization of his design, has created a relationship that is artistically and economically enriching to both drum corps and marching bands.
George continues to push for change in his corps and the entire activity. He has a vision that has proved to be years ahead of his time and he remains the single most audible voice encouraging drum corps managements, instructors, marchers and fans to consider ideas and concepts that many consider to be shocking and radical, providing food for thought for today and the future.