David Billingsley ’07, a UW-Eau Claire music graduate, recently launched the Billingsley School of Music & Arts, a nonprofit organization that provides free arts access to underserved youth in Minneapolis.
“I’ve wanted to start this school since I was 14 years old,” Billingsley said. “I was always the only black kid (in music class), and you couldn’t help but notice that. I didn’t think it was fair that I had friends with more talent than I had, and I passed them because they didn’t have the resources to continue.”
Billingsley credits his time at UW-Eau Claire with providing a foundation for his career goals and successes.
“My experiences as a student at UW-Eau Claire taught me how to survive, thrive and be innovative and creative in my career,” Billingsley said. “The rigor and passion of the students and faculty at UW-Eau Claire can’t be compared.”
In addition to leading BSOMA, Billingsley is an accomplished pianist and teacher currently on staff at the MacPhail Center for Music in Minneapolis. More about BSOMA is available at bsoma.org.