The Pennsylvania - Delaware String Teachers Association

Member Awards


Each year PADESTA awards members and businesses that are outstanding in our profession for their outstanding work. Award winners are honored at our annual PADESTA Membership Luncheon, hosted at the PMEA In-Service Conference Each Spring. Due to COVID-19 altering the 2020 and 2021 PMEA Conferences, we will be recognizing this year's winners in addition to the last two years of winners. Nominations for 2022 are due March 11, 2022.  The 2022 Nomination Form is available here.  

Congratulations to the 2022 Award Winners

Outstanding New String/Orchestra Teacher


Outstanding String Teacher

Kim Cook


Director of the Year


Distinguished Service (Individual)

Robert Kain (Country String Shop)


Mark Garber

Distinguished Service (Business)

Brighton Music Center

(Richard Scheimer and Bradley Wittmer)

Award Descriptions (.pdf)


Outstanding String Teacher Award

This award is designed to recognize string teachers with six or more years of teaching experience who have advanced the cause and level of string playing and teaching in the states of Pennsylvania and/or Delaware. Public and private school, as well as studio and college teachers are eligible for this award. Candidates are expected to demonstrate outstanding achievement in at least some of the following areas: teaching, performance, program building, clinics, workshops, master classes, coaching, etc. Nominees for this award must be members of PADESTA.

Outstanding New String/Orchestra Teacher Award

This award is designed to recognize string/orchestra teachers with one to five years of full-time teaching experience who have exhibited the highest levels of leadership, dedication, and achievement in public or private schools in the state of Pennsylvania and/or Delaware. Candidates are expected to have demonstrated excellence in at least one of the following areas: teaching, program building, coaching, advocacy, etc. Nominees for this award must be members of PADESTA.

Orchestra Director of the Year Award

Nominees must be currently teaching in a public or private school, or be directing a youth orchestra. The candidate must have demonstrated outstanding achievement as an orchestra teacher and conductor, resulting in major advancement of that candidate’s program with documentation of unusual success. Nominees for this award must be members of PADESTA.

Distinguished Service Award (Individual)

Nominations will be considered for individuals or groups who have made outstanding contributions to the cause of string and/or orchestra education and performance in Pennsylvania and/or Delaware. Past recipients have included school administrators or supervisors who have supported string and/or orchestra programs to an extraordinary degree, as well as instrument repair persons, composers, conductors and others who have made a significant difference to string and/or orchestra programs.

Distinguished Service Award (Business/Organization)

This award is designed to recognize businesses and organizations that have provided extraordinary support and services to and for string and/or orchestra programs in Pennsylvania and/or Delaware.


Past Winners

Outstanding String Teacher

2022—Kim Cook
2020—Venona Detrick
2019—Beth Lavender
2018—Anna Radspinner
2017—Matthew Radspinner

2016—James Lyon
2015—Brenda Covelens

2014—Dr. Johannes Dietrich
2013—Michael E. Martin
2012—Jeff Solow
2011—Gloria Galante
2010—Micah Howard
2009—Marie-Aline Cadieux
2008—Helen Hower
2007—Linda Silver
2006—Margarita Sarch
2005—Collette Wichert
2004—Regina Battista-Barrett
2003—Carol Briselli
2002—Timothy Deighton
2001—Rebecca Kauffmann
2000—Carol Salinsky
1999—Stephanie Tredick

Outstanding New String/Orchestra Teacher

2021—Eric Baker
2019—Katie Black
2018—Sarah Miller

2016—Angela Richards
2015—Lisa Young

2014—Jessica Mitchell
2013—Amanda Neville
2012—Travis Pierce
2011—Marlina DeFelice
2010—Melody Brubaker
2009—Matthew Radspinner
2008—Johanna Hartman
2007—Sarah Lavelle
2006—Mairi Thompson
2004—Ryan Williams
2003—Dalinda Bohr
2002—Greg Woodbridge

Orchestra Director of the Year

2021—Paul and Donna Fox
2020—Virginia Herrmann and Brenda Johnson
2019—Bob Vogel
2018—Melody Cliff
2017—Jeffrey Tedford

2015—Dalinda Bohr

2014—Maryellen Caldwell
2013—Dr. Jeffrey Jacobsen
2012—Anita Smith
2011—David Diehl
2010—Jayne Kreinbihl
2009—Robert Vogel
2008—Johannes Dietrich
2007—Christopher Simon
2006—Joyce Magann
2005—Duane Botterbusch
2004—Marie Weber
2003—Kathleen Yeater
2002—Win Garland
2001—Christopher Para
2000—Peter Brye
1999—Walter Straiton

Distinguished Service Award (Individual)

2022—Robert Kain (Country String Shop) & Mark Garber
2020—Melinda Perttu
2019—Stephen Benham
2018—Joseph Brennan
2017—Mary Lynne Peters

2016—David Leithmann/ Dalinda Bohr
2015—Amanda Narehood

2014—Kathleen Yeater
2012—Stephen Benham
2011—Marie Weber
2010—Robert Gardner
2009—Susan Basalik
2008—Irene Guerriero
2007—Rick Coulter
2006—Kim Cook
2005—Jeffrey Turner
2004—Estelle Hartranft
2003—Hannes Dietrich
2002—John Eaken
2001—Klement Hambourg
2000—Hugh Ferguson
1999—Joseph Primavera

Distinguished Service Award (Business/Organization)

2022—Brighton Music Center (Richard Scheimer and Bradley Wittmer)
2021—The Philadelphia Orchestra
2020—Gerry Branca and Johnstonbaugh's Music
2018—Sandra Neill & Menchey Music
2017—Shank's Strings

2016—Sue Basalik
2015—The School of Delaware

2014—J.R. Judd Violin Shop
2013—Elizabethtown College Music Camp
2012—Country String Shop
2011—Menchey Music
2010—Harrisburg Symphony Education Committee
2009—Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
2007—Jane Lenel (Philadelphia Music Makers Magazine)
2006—Tom Kelly (Zeswitz Music)
2005—Menchey Music
2004—Shank’s Stringed Instruments
2003—Philadelphia Orchestra
2002—J. R. Judd Violin Shop
2001—Country String Shop
2000—Cagnoli’s Music
1999—Loser’s Music

The PADESTA award structure changed after 1998. Please click here for a downloadable pdf of previous award winners.