Six of Ten GRAMMY Music Educator Finalists
for 2023 Are NAfME Members 

Pamela Dawson was named the 2023 GRAMMY Music Educator Award honoree.

The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Museum® announced ten finalists for the 2023 GRAMMY Music Educator Award™, and six of the ten are members of the National Association for Music Education (NAfME)*. More than 1,205 initial nominations were submitted from 47 states—from public to private school educators, from general music teachers to band directors, choral conductors, string teachers, and college professors. NAfME congratulates each and every one of these talented, dedicated music educators.

Here are this year’s finalists. NAfME members are highlighted in bold.*

Name School City State
Phil Aguglia Kenmore East High School Tonawanda New York
Ernesta Chicklowski Roosevelt Elementary Tampa Florida
Pamela Dawson DeSoto High School DeSoto Texas
Antoine Dolberry P.S. 103 Hector Fontanez School Bronx New York
Jack A. Eaddy, Jr. Western Carolina University Cullowhee North Carolina
Marisa Frank Explore! Community School Nashville Tennessee
Trevor Nicholas Senn Arts at Nicholas Senn High School Chicago Illinois
Matthew Shephard Meridian Early College High School Sanford Michigan
Tony Small Pallotti Arts Academy Laurel Maryland
Alice Tsui New Bridges Elementary Brooklyn New York

The 2023 GRAMMY Music Educator, selected from the ten finalists, will receive a $10,000 honorarium and matching grant for their school’s music program, and be recognized during GRAMMY Week 2023. The nine additional finalists will each receive a $1,000 honorarium and matching school grants. Fifteen semifinalists will also receive a $500 honorarium with matching school grants.

The honorariums and grants provided to the finalists and schools are made possible through the support of the GRAMMY Museum’s Education Champion Ford Motor Company Fund. Outreach for this program has been assisted by the American Choral Directors Association, National Association for Music Education, NAMM Foundation, and National Education Association.

Seven of the nine previous GRAMMY Music Educator honorees—Kent Knappenberger, Jared Cassedy, Phillip Riggs, Keith Hancock, Melissa Salguero, Jeffery Redding, and Mickey Smith Jr.—are NAfME members. The 2021 GRAMMY Music Educator Award honoree is Jeffrey Murdock. The 2022 GRAMMY Music Educator Award recipient was Stephen Cox, band director at Eastland High School in Eastland, Texas.

Learn more about the Music Educator AwardTM process.

Nominations for the2024 Music Educator Awardare openfor both teachers, students, and the public to nominate a music educator that inspires them today.The deadline to nominate is March 15.

Congratulations and best wishes to the finalists!

* This number reflects those whose memberships were current at the time of this announcement and is subject to change.

December 20, 2022. © National Association for Music Education (

April 2024 Teaching Music

Published Date

December 20, 2022


  • NAfME News


December 20, 2022. © National Association for Music Education (

What does Tri-M mean to you? Tri-M Alumnus Madelynn W.
Messiah University. Learn more. Earn your master's in music conducting or music education. Online. Flexible. Affordable.
New Gator Cases Allegro Series Orchestra Bags