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A Legacy in Music: Three Longtime NMM Faculty to Retire

Left to Right: Dr. Margaret Downie Banks; Dr. Sabine Klaus; Dr. Deborah Check Reeves


It is with deep appreciation and respect that the National Music Museum and the University of South Dakota College of Fine Arts announces the retirement of three long-serving employees. Dr. Sabine Klaus, Curator of the Joe & Joella Utley Collection of Brass Instruments and Professor of Music; Dr. Deborah Check Reeves, Curator of Education, Woodwinds, and Professor of Music; and Dr. Margaret Downie (Peggy) Banks, Senior Curator, Associate Director, and Professor of Music have faithfully served the NMM for a combined 94 years.

Together, they have been essential in making the museum the success it is today. Dr. Banks received the annual Curt Sachs Award from the American Musical Instrument Society in recognition of lifetime contributions towards the goals of the society. Dr. Reeves has published 88 articles about historical clarinets, which have appeared in The Clarinet, the journal of the International Clarinet Association (ICA), as well as articles in education journals, the flute journal, and The Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments. Dr. Klaus was recognized for her work with the Joe R. and Joella F. Utley Collection of Brass Instruments by the American Musical Instrument Society with the Nicholas Bessaraboff Prize for best book-length publication in 2014 for Trumpets and Other High Brass, Volume 1: Instruments of the Single Harmonic Series. The Utley collection consists of more than 600 brass instruments including a splendid assemblage of cornets, trumpets and related instruments.

All three scholars will be contributing to the NMM after retirement through research and writing projects, assistance with collections, and ensemble direction. We welcome their continued involvement in the work of the National Music Museum and the College of Fine Arts. Their legacy is our future!

Thank you Sabine, Debbie, and Peggy!


In honor of their great service, Drs. Banks, Klaus, and Reeves have been granted Emeritus status by USD President Sheila Gestring, effective upon their retirement in June 2023.


Dwight Vaught, Director

Dr. Bruce Kelley, Dean

National Music Museum

University of South Dakota, College of Fine Arts



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