Meet Mr. Murphy, the new Dean of Students

Mr. Murphy returns to his alma mater and shares how music impacts his life


Staff photo

Mr. Chris Murphy graduated from St. Pius X in 1997. After 12 years as a middle school and elementary teacher, he returned to his alma mater this summer as the new Dean of Students.

Olivia Piontek, Staff Writer

This year St. Pius hired a new dean of students, Mr. Chris Murphy. 

Mr. Murphy grew up in Atlanta, GA right off of Briarcliff Rd. He attended Immaculate Heart of Mary and St. Pius X, graduating in the class of 1997. During his time in high school, he was involved in music ministry, math team,  basketball team, and  student council. 

Mr. Murphy went to Georgia State University to receive a Bachelor’s degree in early childhood education, and later went back to get a Master’s degree in educational leadership. Before coming to St. Pius, he taught 4th grade at Montgomery Elementary and 7th grade at Henderson Middle School. Some of Mr. Murphy’s former students are now at St. Pius.

“It’s neat to see some of my old students here,” he said. “They are not fourth graders anymore. It’s neat to see how much they have grown and to see those familiar faces.”

After 12 years as a teacher, he wanted to go into administration. When the job at St. Pius became available this summer, he jumped at the opportunity to return to his alma mater, because of “the community, the location, the traditions, and to work in the place where my mom, ten other siblings, and I walked the halls. It was cool to come back to a place that I could essentially call home.” 

When he is not working here at school, he is either playing disc golf, listening to music, doing yard work, hanging out with his wife and three kids, going grocery shopping, or singing karaoke. 

Yes, that’s right, karaoke. 

“Music is always playing in my life, anytime I am doing anything,” he said. “My family has always loved to sing when we get together.”

Even Mr. Murphy’s wife and kids like to sing karaoke.

“My daughter loves to sing. It takes a little bit to get her to sing in front of people, but she does and she is getting better,” he said. “Even my wife will get up there and sing sometimes, and she never thought in a million years that she would get in front of people and sing as it is not her forte.” 

He went on to add, “not to say that we are really good at singing, we just like to have a good time.” 

For those who say that they don’t have enough talent or confidence to sing their hearts out on a stage, Mr. Murphy has some advice, “when people say I am not good at karaoke, I like to say just get up there and lose yourself.” 

He’s so passionate about karaoke that he even invested in his own personal equipment. 

“I bought a little karaoke machine, then it grew into a digital PA system,” said Mr. Murphy. 

He went on to explain, “it also grew into a job as I host karaoke at my brother’s old restaurant on the weekends, birthday parties, pool parties, etc.When I play the song the person on stage will absolutely lose themselves, it is fun to watch people get into it, I also like to watch the people who butcher the songs,” but ultimately, “it is just fun to be there and to watch people have a good time.”  

His interest in karaoke began in 2020 when Covid hit. 

“It was an interesting time. We were all locked in our houses and could not go out and do many things,” he said. “I was teaching, my wife was teaching, and my three kids were learning all from home, so I was stationed in the garage and I decided to station my karaoke equipment there. When I [was] done with school I would open the garage and sing to the neighborhood.”

“Around 3:30 everyday my garage door would open I would get on the mic and sing some songs, and all of the sudden around 4:00 my yard would be full of people listening to me sing,” he continued.

 He said that it was just fun to be around each other because you were not allowed to connect as we were all told to quarantine. He called it corona-oke. 

He enjoys a variety of music, everything from rap, to country, to rock, to easy listening, to jazz.

“My favorite love song to sing is ‘Just Once’ by James Ingram.  I love to sing that song. A classic I like to sing that I would hear on Randy and Spiff on Fox 97 with my mom driving the car is ‘Windy’ by The Association. However, one of my favorite songs to sing is ‘Automatic’ by The Pointer Sisters. Every time I sing, I must sing that song.”

Since he became the dean of students, Mr Murphy does not really have time to host karaoke anymore but “he loves doing it whenever anyone asks him to set up.”

Mr. Murphy joins a list of staff members who have returned to their alma mater. When you see Mr. Murphy in the hallway, make sure to say hello.