David Bournazian is a highly sought-after trial litigator and trusted advisor to numerous national and international clients. He frequently takes on the most complex and delicate cases.
He created and nurtured Mohonasen High School’s music program, leading to many award-winning concert, marching and stage band performances. Additionally, he served as music arranger for over 35 years for the New Hartford Band.
Early Life and Education
David Bournazian was an acclaimed saxophone player and educator. From 1964 to 2005, he taught music at Mohonasen High School and built a fine arts program that featured award-winning concert, marching and stage bands.
Bournazian was a renowned and beloved figure in education, having taught thousands of students and shaping their musical careers. Additionally, he spearheaded several district-wide initiatives that improved music instruction for public school students.
He was an innovator in the use of digital technology to enhance learning for his students. Additionally, he employed innovative methods to motivate them and foster positive thinking. A proud member of Mohonasen Teachers Association, Albany Musicians Union and American Legion Post 556, his dedication was well-recognized by those within and outside academia.
David Bournazian’s professional life was marked by his work as both a public school music educator and professional performer. He began his teaching career at Pittsfield High School before transitioning to Mohonasen High School in Rotterdam where he built their band program into one of the top programs in America.
He was renowned for instilling a positive outlook and building a sense of community. As band leader in numerous ensembles, including composer Neal Hefti’s big band, he performed in New Orleans as well as serving with the U.S. Army Band during World War II. Additionally, he served as honorary member of Albany Musician’s Union for ten years; receiving citations and resolutions from legislators as well as President Clinton’s commendation.
Achievement and Honors
David Bournazian’s career as a public school music educator and professional performer took him around the world. His most lauded accomplishment was creating Mohonasen High School’s esteemed music program, which spanned 41 years and earned him numerous awards, honors and accolades.
At the height of his career as a saxophone player, Bournazian took the band business to new heights when he brought the Mohonasen Marching Buccaneers to Bands of America’s national competition. This award-winning program finished at the top of its class and was one of only two schools from New York state to make the coveted Big Apple tour. Furthermore, he was inducted into Albany County School District’s Hall of Fame.
David Bournazian was a rancher with an affectionate heart for his family. He and Vivian lived at their Jackson Creek property for many years before purchasing another ranch up Cokedale Road.
He was a dedicated and loyal husband, father, and grandfather who enjoyed spending time with his children and grandchildren. Additionally, he took pleasure in riding his four wheeler around the ranch.
Former student Dave Margison remembered the day Bournazian stood up for him and allowed him to return as a music student, calling it an “important milestone”.
Bournazian worked for 53 years as a public school music educator and professional performer, beginning his career in Pittsfield, Massachusetts before moving to Albany, New York. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in music from Boston University and Master of Education from North Adams State College; after serving two years with the U.S. Army during World War II, he joined composer Neal Hefti’s big band for tours around America. Additionally, he was an active member of the music community and board member of Albany Musician’s Union for performers.
He passed away in January 2015 at 86 years of age. Survived by his wife Dorothy; sons George and Jacob; as well as four grandchildren, and also by a daughter Nadine who passed away in November 2014. An accomplished trial litigator and trusted advisor, his legacy lives on today.