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Phillip Riggs To Receive Music Educator Award
Phillip Riggs

Photo: Alexandra Lane

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Phillip Riggs To Receive Music Educator Award

Durham, N.C., music educator to receive the third annual award during The Recording Academy's Special Merit Awards Ceremony in spring 2016

GRAMMYs/Feb 11, 2016 - 12:50 am

Phillip Riggs of North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics in Durham, N.C., has been announced as the recipient of the third annual Music Educator Award presented by The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation. A total of 10 music teachers from 10 cities across eight states were selected as finalists for the award. In total, more than 4,500 initial nominations were submitted from all 50 states.

The Music Educator Award was established to recognize current educators (kindergarten through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools.

Riggs will be flown to Los Angeles to attend the 58th Annual GRAMMY Awards ceremony and will receive a $10,000 honorarium. This special award will be presented at The Recording Academy's Special Merit Awards Ceremony (honoring recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Trustees Award and Technical GRAMMY Award) in spring 2016. The nine other finalists will receive a $1,000 honorarium, and the schools of all 10 finalists will receive matching grants.

"With the creation of this award, The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation are shining a spotlight on the positive and lifelong impact that music educators have on their students," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of the GRAMMY Foundation and The Recording Academy. "So many GRAMMY-nominated and GRAMMY-winning artists share with me how a music teacher encouraged them early on, nurtured their talents and helped them realize that a professional career in music was an attainable goal. We are delighted to recognize Mr. Riggs for helping to usher in the next generation of GRAMMY-caliber talent."

"I am truly honored and humbled. Most of my career has been about opening doors for others and working to enable students and fellow teachers to learn and to grow," said Riggs. "My efforts to foster music education in North Carolina stand firmly on the shoulders of numerous students, parents, peers, and administrators in communities that value excellence in music. Music educators are fortunate to have The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation as steadfast supporters of music in all schools and it is exciting to have the opportunity to share the importance of music education throughout the country."

Riggs has taught band and choir at various levels in North Carolina for the past 27 years. He is a recipient of the Exceptional Contribution in Outreach Award presented annually by the University of North Carolina Board of Governors for his work with music programs throughout North Carolina. Prior to his tenure at North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, Riggs was the fine arts coordinator at Reagan High School. He became the first faculty member inducted into the Reagan Hall of Fame. Riggs is an active clinician and adjudicator throughout the United States and China. His professional affiliations include North Carolina Music Educators Association, Nation Association for Music Education, National Band Association, and American School Band Directors Association.

Applications for the fourth annual Music Educator Award are currently online; to nominate a teacher, visit GRAMMYMusicTeacher.com. The nomination deadline for the 2017 Music Educator Award is March 15, 2016, while the teacher application deadline is March 31, 2016. 

Incredible Educators: 10 Finalists Announced For 2019 Music Educator Award

Photo: WireImage.com

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Incredible Educators: 10 Finalists Announced For 2019 Music Educator Award

Meet the nation's best music teachers in the running for The Recording Academy and GRAMMY Museum's ultimate educator honor

GRAMMYs/Dec 13, 2018 - 01:30 am

For students of all levels, the benefits of music education are clear. But it's the teachers providing the instruction who make the most lasting impression.

Today the Recording Academy and GRAMMY Museum announced 10 finalists for the 2019 Music Educator Award, which recognizes current educators, kindergarten through college, who have made a significant and lasting contribution in the field of music education.

Coming from 10 cities across six, these 10 names represent the nation's elite music educators, and were selected from over 2,800 initial nominations from all 50 states.

  • Jeremy Bradstreet, Dublin Coffman High School, Dublin, Ohio
  • Victor de los Santos, Santa Ana High School, Santa Ana, Calif.
  • Elizabeth Hering, Churchill High School, Canton, Mich.
  • Henry Miller, Sierra Vista Middle School, Lake Forest, Calif.
  • Amy Rangel, Glendale High School, Burbank, Calif.
  • Jeffery Redding, West Orange High School, Orlando, Fla.
  • Scott Sheehan, Hollidaysburg Area Senior High School, Hollidaysburg, Pa.
  • Mickey Smith Jr., Maplewood Middle School, Sulphur, La.
  • Craig Snyder, Penncrest High School, Garnet Valley, Pa.
  • John Weatherspoon, Lake Worth Community High School, West Palm Beach, Fla.

The award is open to current U.S. music teachers, and anyone can nominate a teacher—students, parents, friends, colleagues, community members, school deans, and administrators. Teachers are also able to nominate themselves, and nominated teachers are notified and invited to fill out an application.

From these finalists, one recipient will be selected as the sixth annual honoree and be flown to Los Angles to attend the 61st GRAMMY Awards and various GRAMMY Week events. The nine additional finalists will receive a $1,000 honorarium, and the schools of all 10 finalists will receive matching grants. Fifteen semifinalists will receive a $500 honorarium with matching grants as well. The matching grants are made possibly by the generous support of the GRAMMY Museum's Education Champion Ford Motor Company Fund.

Does all this make an incredible music educator come to mind? Nominations for the 2020 Music Educator Award are now open at grammymusicteacher.com

Education Champions: 2019 Music Educator Award Semifinalists Announced

2021 Music Educator Award Semifinalists Announced By The Recording Academy & GRAMMY Museum

The Recording Academy and GRAMMY Museum's Music Educator Award

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2021 Music Educator Award Semifinalists Announced By The Recording Academy & GRAMMY Museum

A total of 25 music teachers from 24 cities across 16 states, have been announced as semifinalists, selected from more than 1,989 initial nominations submitted from all 50 states

GRAMMYs/Oct 13, 2020 - 06:00 pm

Today the Recording Academy and GRAMMY Museum revealed the semifinalists list for the annual Music Educator Award. In all, a total of 25 music teachers from 24 cities across 16 states, have been announced as semifinalists, selected from more than 1,989 initial nominations submitted from all 50 states. Check out the full list below:

The Music Educator Award recognizes current educators who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools. The recipient will be recognized during GRAMMY Week 2021.

The award is open to current U.S. music teachers, and anyone can nominate a teacher — students, parents, friends, colleagues, community members, school deans, and administrators. Teachers are also able to nominate themselves, and nominated teachers are notified and invited to fill out an application.

Each year, one recipient is selected from 10 finalists and recognized for their remarkable impact on students' lives. They will receive a $10,000 honorarium and matching grant for their school’s music program. The nine additional finalists will receive a $1,000 honorarium and matching grants. The remaining fifteen semifinalists will receive a $500 honorarium with matching school grants.

The matching grants provided to the schools are made possible by the generosity and support of the GRAMMY Museum’s Education Champion Ford Motor Company Fund. In addition, the American Choral Directors Association, National Association for Music Education, NAMM Foundation, and National Education Association support this program through outreach to their constituencies.

The finalists will be announced in December, and nominations for the 2022 Music Educator Award are now open. To nominate a music educator, or to find more information, please visit www.grammymusicteacher.com.

GRAMMY Museum Announces Digital Museum October Schedule

Kent Knappenberger To Receive Inaugural Music Educator Award
Kent Knappenberger

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Kent Knappenberger To Receive Inaugural Music Educator Award

New York music teacher and choir director to be honored at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony & Nominees Reception during GRAMMY Week

GRAMMYs/Dec 3, 2014 - 05:06 am

Kent Knappenberger of Westfield Academy and Central School in Westfield, N.Y., has been announced as the recipient of the first annual Music Educator Award presented by The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation.

A total of nine music teachers from nine cities across seven states are finalists for the award. In total, more than 30,000 initial nominations were submitted from all 50 states. The nine finalists will receive a $1,000 honorarium, and the schools of all 10 finalists also will receive matching grants.

"I am extremely humbled and honored to be the recipient of the first-ever Music Educator Award," said Knappenberger. "I believe that this award has already been and will continue to be a tremendous encouragement to all music educators. Besides the attention it has brought to many fine teachers, it brings attention to the importance of music education in general."

View a complete list of Music Educator Award finalists

"The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation created this award to highlight the extraordinary influence of music teachers on their students in and beyond the classroom," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of the GRAMMY Foundation and The Recording Academy. "Many musicians would not be expressing their gift for creativity had it not been for the dedication and encouragement of a music teacher who inspired them to pursue a professional career."

Knappenberger has been a music teacher and choir director at Westfield Academy and Central School for 25 years. He holds a bachelor's degree from the State University of New York at Fredonia and a master's degree in music education, harp performance and literature from Eastman School of Music, and is a member of the National Education Association. Knappenberger has taken his passion for teaching abroad by serving as a volunteer music teacher at the Ana Gonzaga Methodist Institute in Rio de Janeiro. He currently resides in Westfield with his wife and children.

The Music Educator Award was established to recognize current educators (kindergarten through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools. Each year, one recipient will be selected from 10 finalists, and will be recognized for his/her remarkable impact on students' lives.

Knappenberger will be flown to Los Angeles to accept the award at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony & Nominees Reception on Jan. 25, attend the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards ceremony, and receive a $10,000 honorarium.

Applications for the second annual Music Educator Award are currently online at GRAMMYMusicTeacher.com. The deadline to nominate a teacher is March 31. The application process will be adjusted each year to allow the broad array of effective teaching styles and methods used in the discipline to be recognized and awarded.

 

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Neil Portnow's 55th GRAMMY Awards Telecast Remarks

Recording Academy President/CEO is joined by Ryan Seacrest and Justin Timberlake to announce new Music Educator Award

GRAMMYs/Dec 3, 2014 - 05:06 am

(Following is a transcript of Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow's remarks on the 55th GRAMMY Awards telecast. Portnow was joined by GRAMMY Foundation Honorary Boards Chair Ryan Seacrest and Justin Timberlake.)

Neil Portnow: What a fitting tribute to the late great Dave Brubeck. Thank you, Chick Corea, a two-time GRAMMY winner tonight, Stanley Clarke and Kenny Garrett, thank you gentlemen, for that exquisite version of "Take Five," a GRAMMY Hall Of Fame recording by the Dave Brubeck Quartet that has endured for more than half a century.

Speaking of music history, when I was six years old I saw Elvis Presley on television and immediately asked to take guitar lessons.

My first guitar teacher had the perfect name: Mr. Stan Solow. And though I didn't become a guitar god, Mr. Solow still changed my life forever.

Ryan Seacrest: The GRAMMY Foundation works year-round to encourage our next generation of music makers and I'm so proud to serve as the new honorary chairman of the Foundation in this life-changing effort.

Neil Portnow: Great artists also have a crucial part to play, devoting their own time and energy to help our next generation of musicians.

So please welcome one of those amazing artists -- you saw him perform earlier tonight -- my friend, Justin Timberlake.

Justin Timberlake: How's everybody doing tonight? Can you please make some noise for the amazing music performances we've heard tonight? Are these the best GRAMMYs ever? In music as in life, we all have lessons to learn. And like so many of these people sitting up front tonight, I will forever be thankful to those who taught me so much along the way. Teachers really are the unsung heroes of our creative community.

Ryan Seacrest: So to recognize the vital contributions music teachers make, the GRAMMY Foundation is teaming up with The Recording Academy to present a brand-new honor, the Music Educator Award, beginning next year during GRAMMY Week. We'll be recognizing outstanding classroom music teachers from kindergarten all the way through college. And we want your help to identify them. To nominate your favorite music teacher, just go to www.grammymusicteacher.com and tell us about them.

Justin Timberlake: For every GRAMMY winner on this stage tonight, there are thousands of great music educators working behind the scenes to provide the inspiration, the passion and the skills our young musicians need.

Neil Portnow: Let's all say thank you for everything these teachers do for our young musicians, and for all of us who truly love music.

As we look toward the next generation of music greats, we will never forget the legacy of those we lost this past year.