Nominations are currently being accepted for a pair of esteemed educator awards presented annually by the North Carolina Symphony.
North Carolina students, parents, colleagues and community members can recommend their local music teacher for the 2013 Maxine Swalin Award for Outstanding Music Educator and Jackson Parkhurst Award for Special Achievement now through Monday, May 6.
Download the application to nominate a local music teacher who has made a difference under “Competitions & Awards” at www.ncsymphony.org/educationprograms or contact Symphony Artistic Administrator Amy Russell at email@example.com, or 919) 789-5463. One application applies to both awards.
The Maxine Swalin Award for Outstanding Music Educator celebrates a North Carolina music teacher who makes a lasting difference in the lives of students of all abilities and backgrounds, serves the community in an exemplary manner as a role model in music education, instills a love for music in children and inspires students to reach appropriately high musical standards.
The $1,000 recognition is made in honor of Maxine Swalin, wife of Dr. Benjamin Swalin, North Carolina Symphony music director from 1939 to 1972. Together they lobbied for the passage of North Carolina Senate Bill No. 248, “The Horn Tootin’ Bill,” providing state financial support for the Symphony’s education program, and in 1945 established the children’s concert division of the Symphony. Over 60 years later, the North Carolina Symphony’s education program remains one of the finest and most extensive in the country, bringing free live symphonic music to school children across the state.
In 2009, the Symphony created a new prize, the Jackson Parkhurst Award for Special Achievement, to be granted in the years in which a strong second candidate for the Swalin Award demands recognition. The prize, which includes a $500 recognition, is named after the Symphony’s former director of education, in honor of his longstanding service to the students of North Carolina.
Dr. Timothy Babb, band director at Mountain Heritage High School in Burnsville, N.C., and David Deese, band director of East Davidson High School in Thomasville, N.C., were last year’s winners of the Swalin and Parkhurst Awards, respectively.
Babb served 32 years as band director at Mountain Heritage High School in Burnsville until his retirement at the end of the last school year. Displaying an extraordinary commitment to his school, he established numerous musical programs and inspired many of his students to pursue careers in music. He opened up countless musical opportunities to students experiencing economic hardship and is a model for special education and inclusion in his own classroom.
Additionally, Babb mentored colleagues through the prestigious National Board Certification process. Nominators described him as a “professional leader who inspires fellow teachers to expand their personal educational horizons.”
Deese has transformed his high school band into one of national distinction and is a recognizable figure and force within his community. A fixture in the lives of his students, Deese displays a leadership and motivation that, in the words of one nominator, “speaks for itself through the individual and corporate success that [his students] achieve.”
For complete information on the Symphony’s music education offerings for young students, adult learners and teachers, visit www.ncsymphony.org/educationprograms.
The N.C. Symphony is a unit of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources. For more information on North Carolina’s arts, history and culture visit Cultural Resources online.