Nelson was born Feb. 12, 1953. He was 57.
“Dan came to PLNU in 1991 and built an outstanding band and instrumental program in the department of music,” said PLNU President Bob Brower, Ph.D. “The concert band, jazz band and other ensembles performed and traveled widely with great acclaim. Dan’s interest in students and his commitment to their growth and development marked his teaching and counsel. Recently, his passion to help children in Rwanda involved him in LoveWorks trips there and fundraising efforts to build facilities for children.”
Since 2007, Nelson raised more than $25,000 for the Ndengera Foundation. His legacy includes school facilities in Gisenyi, Rwanda — facilities his efforts helped build. Nelson earned his B.A. from MidAmerica Nazarene College and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.
In addition to teaching and conducting at PLNU, he led his church orchestra, was a consultant to SeaWorld and served as an adjudicator for Gateway Music Festivals, World of Music Festivals, San Diego city schools and the California Music Educators Association.
Nelson is survived by his daughter, Lauren; his wife, Jann; his parents, Barbara and Elmer; and his brothers, Dean and David.
The Nelson family has requested, in lieu of flowers, any memorial gifts be
designated to the Daniel Nelson Band Conducting Endowed Scholarship. If you
would like to give in memory of Dan Nelson, please make your check out to
Point Loma Nazarene University with “In Memory of Daniel Nelson Band
Conducting Endowed Scholarship” in the memo section and send to: University Advancement, Point Loma Nazarene University, Attention: Steve Seelig, 3900 Lomaland Drive, San Diego, 92106.