Dean Peterson is in his 24th year as Director of Choirs at Hellgate High School. He received his Bachelors degrees in Music Education and Piano Performance from the University of Montana and his Masters degree in Music Education with Kodaly emphasis from Holy Names College, Oakland, CA.
Prior to his duties as choral conductor at Hellgate High School, he spent seven years as an elementary music specialist in the Missoula Public Schools and conducted the Missoula All City Boys Choir. In 1987 he co-founded the Missoula Youth Choir and has since co-directed the group in all seven of their semi-annual performances during the Missoula International Choral Festival.
In 1992 he was selected as a member of the Robert Shaw Choral Workshop and Performance of the Beethoven Missa Solemnis in Carnegie Hall. In 1997 he was presented with a $25,000 National Milken Educator of the Year Award. In 2004, he was honored to conduct the Hellgate High School Chevaliers in performance at the Northwest Convention of the American Choral Directors Association.
He is active professionally as a member and past president of the Montana Choral Directors Association, a member of the Montana Music Educators Association, is on the Board of Directors for the Missoula International Choral Festival and is a member of the Montana High School Association Music Committee. In 2006 Dean was selected as the conductor of the Missoula Symphony Chorale. He and his wife Dorothy have been very active musically in the Missoula community for over 30 years and are the proud parents of two children Ross, 21 and Elin, 17.