John E. Simons, DMA


Interim Dean, College of the Arts; Professor, School of Music

Phone: (626) 387-5728

Email: [email protected]

Office Location: Warren Music Center, Room 100

John E. Simons, DMA, serves as interim dean and associate dean of graduate studies in the College of the Arts, and as professor of music, teaching in the worship studies area. Before joining Azusa Pacific, he served as associate dean, chair of worship and ministry, and professor of music in the School of Church Music at Southwestern Seminary, and he has also served as a collegiate choral conductor, public school choral and drama director, and full-time worship pastor. An advocate of community music and the arts, he founded the Fort Worth Children’s Choir, Fort Worth Youth Chorale, Mercer University Children’s Choir, Georgia All-State Baptist Youth Choir Festival, Southern Piedmont Children’s Choir, North Carolina United Methodist All-State Youth Choir, Brevard College Sacred Music Project, and Church Music Camerata of Oklahoma. Simons co-founded and served as the coordinating editor for the Celebrating Grace Hymnal (Celebrating Grace, Inc., 2010), and was the founder and editor in chief of Artistic Theologian: Journal of Ministry and Worship Arts. As a conductor, Simons studied with Euell Porter, Hugh Sanders, Richard Cox, William Carroll, and Hilary Apfelstadt. As a church musician, he studied with Ray F. Luper, Robert H. Young, and Harry Eskew.


  • DMA, Choral Conducting, University of North Carolina, Greensboro
  • MM, Conducting and Sacred Music, Baylor University
  • BM, Music Education, Baylor University

Academic Area

  • School of Visual and Performing Arts (College of the Arts)
  • School of Music (College of the Arts)


  • Church Music Scholarship
  • Conducting
  • Worship Leadership
  • Arts Curriculum Design and Accreditation
  • Arts Leadership
  • Community Children’s Choir Advocacy