2014 Fall Newsletter

In Memoriam

Bill PetersenJohn William "Bill" Petersen Jr.

John William "Bill" Petersen Jr. passed away at his home in Austin, Texas, on Oct. 9, at the age of 47. Bill earned his bachelor’s degree in music from Cal Poly in 1995 and is remembered as a talented, creative and passionate student and musician with a wonderful sense of humor and zest for life.

Bill enjoyed great success as a musician/composer, especially as a member of The Invincible Czars, a popular and creative Austin band. He was also a home automation professional with Dale Johnson Systems. He enjoyed the variety of life’s offerings and loved sharing them with others. His passions were composing and playing music, cooking and grilling, gardening and traveling — as well as creative endeavors like wearing funky socks!

He is survived by his partner, James Canup and many relatives. It is clear that Bill was much loved and made a positive impact on many lives — he will be missed.

Jesse Edward Norris

Jesse Edward Norris passed away on Aug. 17. He was a Cal Poly graduate (B.S., Animal Husbandry, 1958; M.A., Education, 1961), and a great friend of the Music Department. He traveled with the Cal Poly Bands to Los Angeles and New York and on international trips to Austria, Brazil, Canada, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. On all of the trips, Norris would help students who could not afford to fund the full amount for their journey. He often hosted large pool parties for band students at his San Luis Obispo hotel. In addition to being a successful businessman, he was an educator, a former member of the San Luis Obispo City Council, and a veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard. He was a member of the Rotary Club of San Luis Obispo with Music Professor Emeritus William Johnson.