Eight NAfME Members Among Ten GRAMMY Music Educator of the Year Finalists


THE RECORDING ACADEMY® AND THE GRAMMY FOUNDATION® has announced the finalists for the Second Annual Music Educator Award of the Year award. The 2015 award will be presented at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony & Nominees Reception on Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015, during GRAMMY® Week. Ten music teachers from nine states were chosen from more than 7,000 initial nominations that were submitted from all 50 states.

The finalists, with NAfME members’ names highlighted in bold, are:





Steven Acciani

Diamond Bar High School

Diamond Bar, California

William Bennett

Cane Bay High School

Summerville, South Carolina

Jared Cassedy

Windham High School

Windham, New Hampshire

Charles Cushinery

Ed W. Clark High School

Las Vegas, Nevada

Krista Fanning

Caddo Middle Magnet

Shreveport, Louisiana

Richard Maxwell

Arcadia High School

Phoenix, Arizona

Debra Reilly

Springhouse/Orefield Middle Schools

Allentown, Pennsylvania

Huber Smith

Maplewood Middle School

Sulphur, Louisiana

Nancie Tobison

Barrington High School

Barrington, Illinois

Danny Yancey

Martin Gifted & Talented Magnet School

Raleigh, North Carolina

The award recognizes a music teacher that has “made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrates a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools.”

NAfME member Kent Knappenberger of Westfield Academy and Central School in Westfield, New York was the first GRAMMY Educator of the Year. The 2015 winner will be selected from the ten finalists and will be flown to Los Angeles to accept the award, attend the 57th Annual GRAMMY Awards ceremony, and receive a $10,000 honorarium. The nine finalists will receive a $1,000 honorarium, and the schools of all 10 finalists also will receive matching grants.

The honorariums and grants provided to the finalists and schools are made possible through the support of the GRAMMY Foundation’s Education Champions Converse, Disney Performing Arts, Ford Motor Company Fund, and Journeys.

Roz Fehr,  NAfME Communications Content Developer, December 5,  2014 © National Association for Music Education (NAfME.org)