top of page
NatalieW gold pointing_.jpg

Natalie Wilson

Veteran Educator/Presenter

Natalie Wilson has taught in the Camas, Washington school district since graduating from Western Washington University in 1984. Her first 18 years as a choral educator were at the middle school/high school level. With a Master's Degree in Education, Natalie has carried those advanced choral concepts into her current elementary K-5 music and vocal jazz program at Grass Valley Elementary.


2020: Washington Music Educators Association Hall of Fame

2018: "Tenuto Award" - DeMiero Jazz Fest

2014: "Educator of the Year"
     Lower Columbia River Music Educators Association 

2013:  Camas School District "Innovator Award"

2012:  "Educator of the Year" 
     Lower Columbia River Music Educators Association 

1998:  "Woman of Distinction"  Soroptimists International


Natalie has a knack for transforming jazz standards into accessible arrangements for young or elementary performing ensembles. Her ability to re-write lyrics and harmonies allow the tunes to emerge with a new straight-ahead flavor.  Her approachable arrangements and original compositions are annually tested and performed by her ensemble "Grass Valley VOCAL JAZZ" so they are proven winners prior to publication.


Natalie's work as a vocal jazz clinician/adjudicator is recognized throughout the Pacific Northwest. Her work with students and directors is respectful and reassuring as she affirms the greatness in the ensemble and plays with alternative ways to interpret the music.

Conference Presenter

Natalie has presented multiple conference sessions and workshops at the local, regional and national level on the topics of Vocal Jazz Concepts (under various titles,) Jazz for the Elementary Classroom, Beginning Vocal Improvisation/Rhythm Section Techniques, Recycled Rhythms, Vocal Jazz Listening and more.  

Her approach is straightforward, informative, and reassuring.  Attendees often comment that they feel comfortable returning to their ensembles ready to teach new jazz concepts to their students. 


Professional organization publications have welcomed articles written by Natalie. Topics include elementary vocal jazz and festival participation.

  • The Choral Journal

  • Jazz Education Journal

  • Voice Magazine - publication of WMEA

  • Orff Echo - Contributed with Sara Alswager

Committee Roles

Natalie currently serves as the K-8 General Music and Vocal Jazz Chair on the Education Committee of the

"Jazz Education Network."


While choral and music educators embrace the teaching of multi-cultural music in their programs, Natalie finds that America's cultural music - jazz - is often overlooked.  It is her desire to share specific, easy-to understand techniques and examples with audiences to encourage the teaching of jazz.

bottom of page