Every year millions of viewers tune in to the Grammys to watch famous musicians present and accept awards and perform the hit songs that got them there. What viewers don’t see, however, are the teachers who helped get them there.
That’s why the Grammy Foundation has decided to honor one special music instructor with the first ever Music Educator Award. The nomination is open to music educators from kindergarten up to college in both public and private schools with the award presented during the Grammy Awards telecast.
Right now there are 217 quarterfinalists, 12 from Georgia, and a number in the Atlanta metro area in line to be selected. The award will soon be whittled down to 10 finalists and one award recipient will be chosen. The winner will be flown to Los Angeles to accept their award live on the Grammy’s stage. The winner will receive more than just national recognition. They will also be honored with a $10,000 cash prize. The nine remaining finalists will win $1,000.
“I didn’t know I was nominated until a co-worker told me that she had read it in a local newspaper,” said Johnny Holloway, a music teacher at Evans Middle School in Newnan. “I work hard but I don’t do it for any kind of reward. I was shocked.”
This is the award’s first year of existence and when it was announced people all over the country sent in their submissions, nominating teachers in their areas. According to the Grammy Foundation, more than 30,000 initial nominations were submitted from all 50 states.
The foundation accepted nominations from students, teachers, school administrators parents and community members.
Eleven other lucky teachers from all over the state have been selected as quarterfinalists and they are listed below:
Barbara Baker McIntosh High School Peachtree City, Ga.
Faye Boyer Lake Joy Primary School Warner Robins, Ga.
Johnny Holloway Evans Middle School Newnan, Ga.
Charles Jackson Dodgen Middle School Marietta, Ga.
Deanna Joseph Georgia State University Atlanta, Ga.
Dana Lamb Cleveland Elementary School Fayetteville, Ga.
Terry Lowry Oak Mountain Academy Carrollton, Ga.
Tarik Rowland Tri-Cities High School East Point, Ga.
Keven Shepherd Miller Grove High School Lithonia, Ga.
William Stufft Toccoa Falls College Toccoa Falls, Ga.
Frank Timmerman Pebblebrook HS – Cobb County Center for Excellence in the Performing Arts Mableton, Ga.
Christy Todd Rising Starr Middle School Fayetteville, Ga.
The winner of the Music Educator Award will finally be announced during the 2014 Grammy’s Ceremony.
(Photo: A high school band known as the Mini Funk Factory. Creative Commons)