Two CCS Teachers Win 2020 Columbus Symphony Music Educator Awards
Feb. 12, 2020 -- CCS teachers Debra Keller-Perry and Danny Gleich are among the winners announced by The Columbus Symphony of the 2020 Music Educator Awards, honoring individuals who make a difference in the community through a dedication to music education and promotion of a greater understanding of and appreciation for the art form.
Each winner will receive a $2,500 grant to spend at their discretion on music education endeavors. Past winners have used these funds to host guest instructors, repair instruments, take professional development classes, or purchase new instruments, computer software, and music.
2020 Music Educator Award – Elementary Education
Elementary Vocal Music Teacher, Clinton Elementary & Winterset Elementary, Columbus City Schools
Keller-Perry is currently in her 31st year of teaching music in public school and 29th in Columbus City Schools. She has taught at Clinton Elementary School for the past 14 years, developing the choral program through Kodaly methodology. In addition to her responsibilities as a classroom teacher, she has served as substitute director for Columbus Children’s Choir, KinderMusik director at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Columbus, music theory director at Con Brio Children’s Choirs, and founder, chair, session chair, and educational outreach director for Columbus Comhaltas. Keller-Perry co-founded the Clintonville Community Choral Festival, guest lectured at OSU for Tech in the Music Classroom and Teaching Special Needs Students Music, co-founded Columbus Comhaltas, organized community Irish music sessions, launched and organized Irish music lessons for kids, co-lead the Music Teacher Based Team (TBT) for Columbus City Schools, and became a CCS Music SLO Evaluator for teacher certification. She is an adjudicator for the CCS Gifted and Talented Department each year, helping to determine which students qualify for musically gifted services. In addition, she has presented at various OMEA State Conferences, Columbus City Schools in-service days in the music department, Google Galaxy about music and tech, and the Autism and the Arts Conference at OSU.
2020 Music Educator Award – Secondary Education
Instrumental Music Teacher, Centennial High School, Columbus City Schools
Gleich is in his 19th year as instrumental music teacher in the Columbus City Schools, currently teaching at Centennial High School. A Northland High alum, he received his Bachelor of Music Education degree at The Ohio State University before beginning his teaching career at his alma mater middle school, Woodward Park. Of his many achievements at Woodward Park, Gleich is most proud of establishing a multicultural festival and concert that featured both a cultural potluck dinner and band/choir performances of various ethnic music. In addition, he served as coordinator and director of the Northland Summer Music Program for 12 years. The program featured ensembles for middle and high school bands and orchestras, beginning and advanced elementary band and strings, and culminated in an outdoor performance of festive and popular music. In 2010, Gleich became director of bands at Centennial High School, and in 2011, received his Master’s in Education from Ashland University. He helped to build what is now the largest band in Columbus, taking them on several trips including the Outback Bowl, Walt Disney World, the annual Buckeye Invitational at Ohio Stadium, and the Massillon Festival of Bands. Highlights of his career at Centennial include the annual Northwest Strings Festival, the Marching Stars’ invitation, and a 2019 performance at The Ohio State University Marching Band’s skull session.