2018 - 2019 TCDA Board of Directors

March 2019                                             Choral Notes

Volume 52
Winter/Spring 2019

In This Issue... 

  1. A Life in Quotations...take Two!, by Kari Gilbertson, Past President
  2. Announcing the 2019 TCDA MS/JH All-State Choir
  3. Take a look at recently added Benefits for Members
  4. Important Dates for Scholarships, Awards and 2020 Clinic Submissions
  5. TCDA High School Student Days this summer
  6. New Endowed Scholarship effort to honor Kathy Blair

 A Life in Quotations...take Two!, by Kari Gilbertson, Past President


"Shift Happens..."   Some of you may have seen my clinic/presentation on Paradigm Shifts in Choral Music Education.  The basic premise is that anything worth keeping is worth evolving and updating...lest it become obsolete.  TCDA is worth keeping and has been undergoing some significant adapting of its own.  Check out the webpage to see some of our evolutions to keep TCDA relevant and current.  Just a few examples:

  • Elementary Immersion Day at the 2019 Summer Convention
  • More available clinic presentations at convention...and throughout the year.
  • Publisher chosen and presented new music showcases
  • More Tried and True music in all divisions
  • High School Student Leadership Day at five state-wide sites
  • Mid-Winter Conference and UIL Selection Reading Session

How we acquire music and information has changed.  Being physically present and involved in the art of music making and teaching is timeless.  Make plans be part of a new day for TCDA. "This ain't your momma's TCDA."

Awards can give you a tremendous amount of encouragement to keep getting better, no matter how young or old you are.   -Alan Alda

Recognition is a good thing, and now is the time for us to recognize our own membership at our TCDA Summer Convention.  Be sure to go Hotel and Convention Registration is open for all.  Don't miss another great year of TCDA!   Go online to and view/download the criteria and forms to nominate for the Choral Excellence Award and the Young Director of Distinction Award.   


Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.   -Pele

The Texas Choral Directors Association annually awards scholarships to Texas college or university undergraduate music education or church music majors with 60 credit hours and at least a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 system, and to active TCDA members (three years of continuous active membership required) seeking assistance with higher education (graduate school or certification level workshops).  The deadline for those Undergraduate and Professional Scholarships is March 31st.  What else would you want to do over Spring Break?   

If you want to conquer fear, don't sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy. -Dale Carnegie
Hotel and Convention Registration is open for all.  Don't miss another great year of TCDA!  And veteran teachers and retirees...TCDA is not done with you!  Don't be done with TCDA!  Please consider how your presence and mentorship is important to continue to give and receive from the community of TCDA that has meant so much over the course of your career.



"Perspective is a beautiful thing!"  This is my personal life motto and it serves me well when I lose perspective about my own blessings and struggles.  Did you know that our state membership and convention is one of the most affordable in the country?  I did a little updated research and found the registration costs for some other wonderful state-acda events.  Here's what I found:







Sure, some were more comparable...but none of them are TCDA!  We're so proud of what we have and what we offer year round.  Here's the pricing for TCDA 2019.  We are even including a one day immersion day for our Elementary focused membership.  What a great value for gaining knowledge, experiences, and professional contacts that will last a lifetime! 

Perspective is a beautiful thing!

 "Leaders aren't born they are made." - Vince Lombardi Register your choir leaders for High School Leadership Day!  Austin/Central Texas, Houston, Rio Grande Valley, DFW, and Lubbock!!

"Remember the Alamo!"   Remember TCDA!  See you soon!


2019 TCDA All-State MS/JH Choir

We are pleased to announce Tom Shelton, Jr. will be the 2019 TCDA All-State MS/JH Choir conductor.  Online auditions are now open.   For more details and audition information, please go to our website, 2019 TCDA All-State MS/JH Choir.   Audition deadline is Sunday, March 24, 2019 - no exceptions.



Recently Added Benefits exclusively for TCDA Members!

We are happy to announce a new partnership with AAA Texas.  TCDA members can now take advantage of discounted rates.  To take advantage of these discounts, call or email Todd Alexander, 832-339-3605 or [email protected]



2019 TCDA Scholarship Application - deadline is March 31, 2019

2019 Choral Excellence Award Nomination - deadline is April 15, 2019

2019 Young Director of Distinction Award Nomination - deadline is April 15, 2019

Submit your ideas for the 2020 TCDA Convention HERE. - deadline is August 31, 2019


Visit the TCDA Member Benefits page to see MORE benefits as a TCDA member!

High School Student Leadership Days this Summer

Make your plans now to have your student leaders attend one of our fabulous student leadership days this summer.  For only $15, they are treated to a full day of leadership training from great speakers.  We are offering 5 in different locations around the great state of Texas.  Keep an eye on our website as we finalize the programming for each day,


  • Central Texas Area
    Monday, July 29, 2019, Stony Point HS, Round Rock, TX
  • DFW Area
    Tuesday, July 30, 2019, LD Bell HS, HEB ISD (Hurst, Bedford, Euless)
  • Houston Area
    Thursday, August 1, 2019, Deer Park HS, Deer Park, TX
  • West Texas Area, Lubbock, TX
    Friday, August 9, 2019, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX
  • Rio Grande Valley Area
    Monday, August 5, 2019, UTRGV-Edinburg, Edinburg, TX


Supporting TCDA

TCDA provides wonderful opportunities for professional development, peer to peer networking, personal growth and development and scholarships for college students and professionals striving to improve their skills and career opportunities.

Fortunately, these opportunities are made possible by our very own members and their generosity.  Please consider giving to this organizaiton to ensure we can continue to give back to you when needed.  There are many ways to give and anything helps!  Please visit our Giving Opportunities page to learn more.

TCDA and the family of Kathy Blair are pleased to announce the creation of the Kathy Blair Memorial Scholarship for Music.  Read all about it HERE.



TCDA supports the international copyright laws for music publications and all directors should be aware of these laws regarding permission to use, copy, perform, that is protected under these laws.  We encourage all directors to be mindful and follow copyright laws.

Be sure to visit our Facebook Page

TCDA Board of Directors 2018 - 2019
President -  Pam Elrod Huffman, Southern Methodist University
Past President - Kari Gilbertson, Richardson ISD
President Elect - Thomas Rinn, Grapevine-Colleyville ISD

Vice President, HS - Jason Dove, Deer Park ISD
Vice President, MS/JH - Christina Chapman, Richardson ISD
Vice President, Elem - Katy Flowers, Midway ISD
Vice President, College/Community - Jeb Mueller, University of Houston
Vice President, Church - Robert Stovall, First United Methodist Church Fort Worth
Secretary/Treasurer - Carisa Niemeyer, Richardson ISD

Executive Director - Sharon Lutz
Member Services Coordinator - Tiffany Downey

Texas Choral Directors Association
7900 Centre Park Drive, Suite A
Austin, TX  78754