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Rusty Eklund

Music Teacher - Math Teacher - Cultural Lecturer


As a teacher, I believe in a fine balance of discovery learning and applied practice, consistent classroom management and collaborative planning. My strengths in teaching are grades 3-10 Math, African History, General Music: Music Literacy, Recorder, Concert Brass and percussion, West African Djembe, Latin Cajon, and Ukulele, Event Management, Studio Recording

Work History


International Performer and Teacher

Mali Djembe, Cajon Trios, Vagabon Tribe, Mali Kan

As a musician I lived in west Africa for the better part of 11 years studying and performing with various urban and village musicians. I have been performing and teaching throughout Asia, Europe, and North America since 1998.


Music Teacher

Shanghai United International School

As music teacher I was responsible for developing the music curriculum for the school, music instruction in a bi-lingual program, and directing large stage shows for a 1,500 student school.


Music and Academic Presentations

Mali Kan and Mali Djembe

Presenting university music instruction, cultural presentations and lectures, and performances throughout the United States, as well as private music instruction.


MYP Math and Music Teacher

International School of Helsinki

I served as MYP high school and middle school mathematics and music instructor at an international school serving the greater international community with students from 60 countries.


Special Education Teacher

Woodward Academy

Teaching Math and Music to incarcerated boys 12-18 years of age. 


Musician, Lecturer

Mali Kan, Lamine Soumano Band, Vagabon Tribe

Performing at music venues and festivals across the USA. Music and culture presentations throughout the country at universities, schools, and fetival events.


Special Education Teacher

Olympia School District

Working as a specialist in a self contained middle school classroom for severely behavior disordered students.


Assistant teacher/Assistant Football Coach

Fife HS

Assisting in the special education resource classroom and coaching linebackers and special teams for the varsity program.


Head Wrestling Coach

LaCrosse Central HS

I managed all aspects of the varsity wrestling program


Assistant Football Coach

University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse

Linebackers and Special Teams coach, merchandising manager.


Event Manager

National Footbll League (NFL)

As Event Manager for the American Bowl Series pre-game festivities in Berlin and NFL Super Bowl Parties in Vienna, Austria, and Frankfurt, Germany I was responsible to create an interactive experience for the visitors, manage the contracted partners, and organize volunteer staff.


Player/Coach/Front Office

Hamburg Blue Devils/Football League of Europe/Gernert Medienberatung

As part of a new international league I was a player, coach, and worked in the front office managing football operations.


Assistant Football Coach

Wilson High School

Linebackers, Running Backs, and Special Teams coach.



Studies in Secondary Education

Pacific Lutheran University

Performing and teaching at universities, schools, festivals and community events throughout the USA, Canada, Europe, and China. Highlighting music and culture from west Africa with my own, unique curriculum for learning African music.

Aug 1998Jun 1999

Bachelor of Liberal Arts

Evergreen State College

I finished one complete academic year to complete my BA, focusing my studies on ethnomusicology while also completing a required course to obtain my teaching license.


State of Iowa

Standard Teacher Certification - Secondary Mathematics Endorsement (5-12)

Currently in renewal at the Iowa Board of Education for issuance October, 2016

Guest Lecturer and Performer at:

Western Washington University

Evergreen State College

University of Oregon

Eastern Oregon University

Idaho State University

Drake University

Dakota Wesleyan University

University of Wisconsin-Stout

William and Mary College

James Madison University

Virgina Commonwealth University

Sweetbrier College

Lynchburg College


Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle

Religion and Culture Studies

International Cooking

Hiking, Cycling and Snowshoeing

Fishing and Camping