10 Finalists Announced for The GRAMMYs' First-Ever Music Educator Award

Related: GRAMMYS, Music Educator Award

10 Finalists Announced for The GRAMMYs' First-Ever Music Educator Award

A total of 10 music teachers from ten cities across eight states have been announced as finalists for the first annual Music Educator Award presented by The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation. In total, more than 30,000 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. A joint partnership and presentation of The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation, this special award will have its inaugural presentation at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony & Nominees Reception honoring recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Trustees Award and Technical GRAMMY Award during GRAMMY Week 2014.



As announced on the 55th Annual GRAMMY Awards by President/CEO of The Recording Academy and GRAMMY Foundation Neil Portnow, TV and radio host/producer and GRAMMY Foundation Honorary Board Chair Ryan Seacrest, and six-time GRAMMY winner Justin Timberlake, the award was open to current U.S. music teachers, and anyone could nominate a teacher - students, parents, friends, colleagues, community members, school deans, and administrators. Teachers were also able to nominate themselves, and nominated teachers were notified and invited to fill out an application.



One recipient will be selected from 10 finalists each year, and will be recognized for his/her remarkable impact on students' lives. The winner will be flown to Los Angeles to accept the award, attend the 56th 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 by the generosity and support of the GRAMMY Foundation's Education Champions Box Tops For Education, Converse, Ford Motor Company Fund, Journeys, and Microsoft Surface, with additional support from Universal Music Group.



A complete list of finalists is below. The winner will be announced in January. Applications for the second annual Music Educator Award are currently online; to nominate a teacher, visit GRAMMYMusicTeacher.com. The deadline to nominate is March 31, 2014. The application process will adjust each year to allow the broad array of effective teaching styles and methods used in the discipline to be recognized and awarded.



First Name Last Name School City State

Lisa Bianconi Kurn Hattin Homes for Children Westminster Vt.

Charles Cushinery Ed W. Clark High School Las Vegas Nev.

Andrew DeNicola John P. Stevens High School Edison N.J.

Vivian Gonzalez South Miami K-8 Center Miami Fla.

Kent Knappenberger Westfield Academy and Central School Westfield N.Y.

Kathrine Kouns Horizon High School Scottsdale Ariz.

Glen McCarthy George Mason University Fairfax Va.

Steve Vutsinas Grassfield High School Chesapeake Va.

Jo Wallace-Abbie Plano West Senior High School Plano Texas

Mary Jo West George Mason High School Falls Church Va.



Established in 1957, The Recording Academy is an organization of musicians, songwriters, producers, engineers and recording professionals that is dedicated to improving the cultural condition and quality of life for music and its makers. Internationally known for the GRAMMY Awards - the preeminent peer-recognized award for musical excellence and the most credible brand in music - The Recording Academy is responsible for groundbreaking professional development, cultural enrichment, advocacy, education and human services programs. The Academy continues to focus on its mission of recognizing musical excellence, advocating for the well-being of music makers and ensuring music remains an indelible part of our culture. For more information about The Academy, please visit www.grammy.com. For breaking news and exclusive content, follow @TheGRAMMYs on Twitter, like "The GRAMMYs" on Facebook, and join The GRAMMYs' social communities on Foursquare, GetGlue, Google +, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and YouTube.



The GRAMMY Foundation was established in 1989 to cultivate the understanding, appreciation and advancement of the contribution of recorded music to American culture. The Foundation accomplishes this mission through programs and activities that engage the music industry and cultural community as well as the general public. The Foundation works in partnership year-round with its founder, The Recording Academy, to bring national attention to important issues such as the value and impact of music and arts education and the urgency of preserving our rich cultural heritage. In recognition of the significant role of teachers in shaping their students' musical experiences, The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation are partnering to present their Music Educator Award. Open to current U.S. music teachers in kindergarten through college, the first Music Educator Award will be presented at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony & Nominees Reception during GRAMMY Week 2014. To nominate a teacher for the second annual Music Educator Award, please visit GRAMMYMusicTeacher.com. For more information about the Foundation, please visit www.grammyfoundation.org. For breaking news and exclusive content, please like "GRAMMY in the Schools" on Facebook at www.facebook.com/grammyintheschools, follow the GRAMMY Foundation on Twitter @GRAMMYFdn at www.twitter.com/GRAMMYFdn and join us on Instagram @GRAMMYFdn at www.instagram.com/GRAMMYfdn.



America's schools have earned more than $558 million through the Box Tops for Education program since the program started in 1996, including $80 million in the 2012-2013 school year alone. More than 90,000 schools use that cash to purchase items such as computers, library books, art supplies, and playground equipment. Schools can earn up to $20,000 by clipping Box Tops from 250 products and can earn eBoxTops by shopping online through the Box Tops Marketplace. To learn more and for a list of participating products, visit www.btfe.com. Facebook at www.facebook.com/BoxTopsforEducation, Twitter at www.twitter.com/BTFE and Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/Boxtops.



Converse Inc., based in N. Andover, Massachusetts, is a wholly owned subsidiary of NIKE, Inc. Established in 1908, the Converse brand has built a reputation as "America's Original Sports Company" and has been associated with a rich heritage of legendary shoes such as the Chuck Taylor All Star shoe, the Jack Purcell shoe and the One Star shoe. Today, Converse offers a diverse portfolio including lifestyle men's, women's and children's footwear, apparel and accessories. Converse product is sold globally by retailers in over 160 countries and through 78 company-owned retail locations in the U.S. For more information, visit media.converse.com.



Ford Motor Company Fund & Community Services works with community partners to advance driving safety, education and community life. For more than 60 years, Ford Motor Company Fund has operated with ongoing funding from Ford Motor Company. The award-winning Ford Driving Skills for Life program teaches new drivers through a variety of hands-on and interactive methods. Innovation in education is encouraged through national programs that enhance high school learning and provide college scholarships and university grants. Through the Ford Volunteer Corps, more than 25,000 Ford employees and dealers work on projects each year that better their communities in more than 40 countries. For more information, visit www.community.ford.com.



Journeys is a leader in the teen specialty retail scene, with more than 800 stores in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Canada. Journeys uses fashion savvy and merchandising science to keep in step with the fast-paced footwear and accessories market for 13- to 22-year-old guys and girls. Journeys offers a wide variety of trendy, relevant brands that cater to teens that seek the hottest, new styles. However, the Journeys store is more than a retail environment - it's an extension of the teen lifestyle. From the plasma TVs playing exclusive content and the latest music videos, to the visual merchandising strategy and promotions, to the employees whose image and style reflect the customers' lifestyle and attitude. In addition, Journeys reaches its customers through www.journeys.com, a mobile website, catalog, national advertising, strategic cross-promotions, social media and grass-roots events like the Noise Tour. Journeys - An Attitude You Can Wear! Journeys is a division of Genesco Inc.



Microsoft's Surface tablet is designed to be the one device for everything in your life. Every Surface offers ports, Office, and covers on which you can type. Whatever you want to imagine, create, and share-Surface makes it possible to do it all. And more. For more information about Surface, please visit ww.surface.com.



Universal Music Group is the global music leader, with wholly owned operations in 60 territories. Its businesses also include Universal Music Publishing Group, one of the industry's premier music publishing operations worldwide. Universal Music Group's labels include A&M/Octone, Angel, Astralwerks, Blue Note Records, Capitol Christian Music Group, Capitol Records, Capitol Records Nashville, Caroline, Decca, Def Jam Recordings, Deutsche Grammophon, Disa, Emarcy, EMI Records Nashville, Fonovisa, Geffen Records, Harvest, Interscope Records, Island Records, Machete Music, Manhattan, MCA Nashville, Mercury Nashville, Mercury Records, Motown Records, Polydor Records, Republic Records, Universal Music Latino, Verve Music Group, Virgin Records, Virgin EMI Records, as well as a multitude of record labels owned or distributed by its record company subsidiaries around the world. The Universal Music Group owns the most extensive catalogue of music in the industry, which includes the last 100 years of the world's most popular artists and their recordings. UMG's catalogue is marketed through two distinct divisions, Universal Music Enterprises (in the U.S.) and Universal Strategic Marketing (outside the U.S.). Universal Music Group also includes Global Digital Business, its new media and technologies division and Bravado, its merchandising company. Universal Music Group is a fully owned subsidiary of Vivendi.




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