The Douglas High School motto is, Once a Bulldog, Always a Bulldog and DHS alum, Benjamin Loreto explained that he now fully understands it after he came back to his former school to lead its music education program.

Loreto said, Once a bulldog, always a bulldog. And now that Im back here, I look at that quote and Im like, wow, its true.

Loreto grew up in Douglas and in the sixth grade while attending Paul Huber Middle School, he got his first taste of playing an instrument and taking band class.

My parents asked me, Do you want to be in band? And I was mostly an academic student, so I thought, sure, why not? Its something else I can do, Loreto said.

His love for music grew from there and during his time in high school he was Drum Major. While in that position, he discovered how much he enjoys helping others.

It’s not just a kid that plays saxophone, it’s this specific person, specific individual that has a valuable asset to provide to the ensemble. That sparked the way for me to begin becoming a music teacher, Loreto said.

After graduating from DHS in 2019, Loreto attended the University of Arizona School of Music and stayed very involved in extracurriculars.

During his time at UA he was part of: The Pride of Arizona Mariachi Arizona UA Wind Symphony UA Wind Ensemble Arizona Symphony Orchestra

However, while at UA he never forgot about his hometown.

Loreto said, Coming back to Douglas was always in the back of my head. It’s my hometown, it’s family, friends.

After graduating from UA in May of 2023, he had the opportunity to go back home for a position with the Douglas Unified School District as the Director of Bands for DHS and Ray Borane Middle School.

Douglas deserves a high quality of music education and I believe I am able to provide that to provide a future musical aspect of Douglas to the generations that are evolving here, Loreto said.

He currently teaches: Wind Band Jazz Band Music Appreciation Guitar Ensemble Choir Middle School Concert Band

DHS Senior and Drum Major, Jazmin Stein said, He’s a really good teacher. If someone doesn’t know something, he’ll go back and teach it to us. He’ll be really patient with us and he likes what he is doing. That’s the key. He likes what he’s doing and he transmits that towards us.

Loreto said he has been enjoying his time so far back in Douglas.

Working here has been amazing. The community support, the administration support, student support, Loreto said. It has been amazing and there is no other place like Douglas, Arizona. It’s a bulldog family, big bulldog family.

The DHS Wind and Jazz Bands will have their first concert under the direction of Loreto on December 21 at Douglas High School at 7pm.

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