Greg Brown earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1984 and his Master’s degree in 1992 from California State University, Hayward. From 1997 to 2021, he was instrumental director and chairman of the music department at Northgate High School in Walnut Creek, where he developed jazz band programs that have inspired countless students. He became chairman of the school’s Performing Arts Department in 2004.
Beginning in 1989 Mr. Brown has served as the Alameda County Representative, and later Jazz Representative, to the California Music Educator’s Association, Bay Section Board. He has been a clinician and festival adjudicator throughout Northern California. Mr. Brown has guest conducted the Northern California Honor Band the Mt. Diablo Unified School District Middle School Honor Band and the Mt. Diablo Unified School District High School Honor Orchestra. As a conductor, he has worked with Bobby Shew, Sean Jones, Carl Allen, Vijay Lyer, Laurence Hobgood, Julian Lage, Mic Gillette, Allen Carter, Jeff Beal, Pete Christieb, Andy Martin, Edgardo Cambon, Francisco Torres, Mary Fettig, Tamir Hendelman, Javier Cabanillas and many others. Mr. Brown currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Diablo Symphony Orchestra.
The Pleasanton Legislative Action Committee selected Mr. Brown as their Educator of the Year in 1988. He was awarded the Outstanding Band Director Award at the Monterey Jazz Festival High School Big Band Competition in 1988 and at the Pacific Grove Band Review in 1989. In 2009, Mr. Brown’s contributions to music education were recognized when the CMEA Bay Section awarded him the Gil Frietas Award. Additionally, Mr. Brown received the Jazz Educator of the Year Award from the CMEA Bay Section in 2014. In that same year, the Mt. Diablo Unified School District chose him as one of five finalists for Teacher of the Year. Mr. Brown received the Paul A. Shaghoian Jazz Educator Award: Honoring Excellence in Jazz Education and Performance by the California Music Educators Association in 2019. In 2020 Mr. Brown received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Mt. Diablo Unified School District.
Since 2014, Brown has been co-director and educational consultant for the Big Band of Rossmoor.