Rachel Day Kessler (born 20 November 1936, LaCrosse, Wisconsin; died 5 September 2022, Davis, California) taught choir in the Davis schools from 1970 until her retirement in 2001. Kessler came to Davis in 1967 when her husband, Don Kessler, took a faculty position at UC Davis. She immediately became a choir director at Davis Community Church. Her first teaching assignment in Davis schools was as a one-year replacement for Davis High School music director, Dick Brunelle, from 1970-71 when Brunelle took off for a year to finish his masters degree at S.F. State. Following his return, she continued with teaching assignments at Holmes and Emerson Junior High Schools. Kessler founded the Davis Chorale in 1978 and passed on directing duties to Allison Skinner when she retired from the group in 2010. She also founded the Davis Children's Chorale in 1995 and retired as director from that group in 2012. She continues to give voice lessons.

She received collegiate degrees in music from the University of Illinois and Indiana University and is a past member of the Robert Shaw Chorale and the Roger Wagner Master Chorale.

Rachel Kessler received the Harmony in Our Lives Award in 1993.


1993 Nov. 4, "Kessler wins 'Harmony in Our Lives' honor," Davis Enterprise, pg. A1.

Orris, Sharyn; 2005 Nov. 17, 'Choral Legacy: Davis choral instructor reflects on a long and happy career,' Davis Enterprise, pg. C1.

Hudson, Jeff; 2012 May 11, 'Choral leader is ready for third retirement,' Davis Enterprise, pg. A1. Retrieved 25 Jan. 2013.

Obituary, 28 October 2022, Davis Enterprise; last retrieved 19 August 2023.