Honorary Life Members

The National Collegiate Choral Organization selects Honorary Life Members to recognize a member of the choral profession who has devoted their life to the enhancement and artistic growth of the choral art. The award recognizes those leaders in our profession who have mentored young conductors, inspired singers, supported music educators in the arts, and shared their talents and gifts in the United States and abroad. In their own ways, each of these individuals has had a major impact on choral music and choral music education through their work at the college and university level. NCCO honors them for their dedication.

Honorary Life Member award recipients are the collegiate and university conductors who have shared their love for choral music devotedly, and who have tirelessly worked to instill this love and joy in their students. Their students often go on to become collegiate choral directors themselves and continue the work of teaching and training young musicians, inspiring the best of our profession.

Honorary Life Members pay no dues to NCCO and may attend all conferences free of registration fees. In this small way, NCCO hopes to show appreciation of and respect for those who have labored and taught to enhance our great profession.

2023 Honorary Life Members

Read below to learn about NCCO’s 2023 Honorary Life Members.

Headshot for Roland Carter

Roland Carter

Roland Marvin Carter is the Holmberg Professor Emeritus of American Music at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC); he served UTC for twenty-four years, and his undergraduate alma mater, Hampton Institute, now University for twenty-five years. Both appointments included stints as head, chair, and director of choirs.

Carter’s accomplishments as a leading figure in the choral arts include lectures, workshops, master classes, and concerts with major choruses and orchestras in prestigious venues nationwide. He is especially noted as an authority on the performance and preservation of music of African American traditions and composers. As a composer/arranger, he is, perhaps, best known for his festival setting of LIFT EVERY VOICE AND SING and his spiritual settings YOU MUST HAVE THAT TRUE RELIGION and IN BRIGHT MANSIONS ABOVE. He has received numerous commissions from churches, choruses, and individuals including most recently Duke University Chapel Choir, the BESA SAKA FESTIVAL, Chorus America, and internationally acclaimed soprano, Marquita Lister.

He conducted the acclaimed community ensemble - Chattanooga Choral Society for the Preservation of African American Song - and served twenty seasons as music advisor and principal guest conductor for the Houston Ebony Opera (TX) Gala Concerts. He was active with the Choir Directors and Organists Guild of the Hampton University Ministers Conference for over four decades, having moved through the ranks of student accompanist to assistant director to Director of Music. Since 2011, the Conference has honored him with the presentation of The Roland M. Carter Living Legends Award annually to distinguished church musicians throughout the country.

Born in Chattanooga, TN, he attended the Orchard Knob and Howard Schools. He was literally deposited on the Hampton Institute campus by his high school music teacher, Edmonia Johnson Simmons. It was her desire that he study where she had with the eminent pianist and composer. R. Nathaniel Dett. He was among three composers/arrangers named MASTERS OF THE SPIRITUAL in 2020 by Conti Classics for a Lincoln Center Concert and in Herbst Theatre, San Francisco, 2022; both with performances by internationally acclaimed vocalists including Madame Fredericka von Stade, Donnie Ray Albert, and Robert Sims.

A past president of the National Association of Negro Musicians, throughout his career, Carter has had a most distinguished record of commitment and service having held seats on the on the boards of directors of the League of American Orchestras, SPHINX, TN ARTS COMMISSION, National Association of State Arts Agencies, the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera Association, ArtsBuild of Chattanooga, and CHORUS AMERICA. He was founder and CEO of Mar-Vel, Inc., a music publisher specializing in the music of African American composers and traditions, now published by WALTON MUSIC/GIA. In 2014, he established The Roland Carter Institute for Studies in American Music (RCISAM). Carter resigned this year the directorship of the Cascade UMC Chancel Choir (Atlanta, GA) after twenty-one years of service. Among his most recent awards and honors - Southern Region of American Choral Directors Association with its 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award in Excellence, the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga naming the street on which its Performing Arts Center stands in his honor – “Dr. Roland Carter Commemorative Street.”

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Rosephanye Powell

Rosephanye Powell has been hailed as one of America’s premier women composers of choral music. She has an impressive catalogue of works published by some of the nation’s leading publishers, including the Hal Leonard Corporation, the Fred Bock Music Companies, Gentry Publications, Oxford University Press, Alliance Music Publications, and Shawnee Press. Dr. Powell’s works have been conducted and premiered by nationally and internationally renowned conductors and have been premiered at distinguished halls around the country, including Carnegie Hall, the Lincoln Center, Spivey Hall, and Strathmore Hall. Dr. Powell’s works have been commissioned by professional choral ensembles, including the Baltimore Choral Arts Society; Sing for the Cure (the Dallas Women's Chorus and the Turtle Creek Chorale); Cantus, men's a cappella vocal ensemble; and Chanticleer, the Grammy award-winning men’s vocal ensemble.

Dr. Powell is commissioned yearly to compose for university choruses, professional, community and church choirs, as well as secondary school choruses. Her work has been auctioned by Chorus America and her compositions are in great demand at choral festivals around the country, frequently appearing on the regional and national conventions of the American Choral Directors Association, as well as Honor Choir festivals. Dr. Powell’s compositions include sacred and secular works for SATB chorus, SSAA chorus, TTBB chorus and children’s voices.

Recent commission and premiere highlights include: Harriet Tubman: Journey to Freedom, an eight-movement work for narrator, mezzo-soprano soloist, SATB chorus, four-hands piano, brass ensemble, percussion ensemble, and bass, commissioned and premiered by the California State University, Dominguez Hills; The Cry of Jeremiah, a four-movement sacred work for narrator, SATB chorus, organ and orchestra, commissioned by the American Guild of Organists, premiered at the Lincoln Center, (NY), the National Philharmonic at Strathmore Hall (Washington, DC), and the Vox Anima Singers at Cadogan Hall, (London, England); Quiet Revolutionary, a three-movement work for SATB chorus and piano commissioned by Harvard University choirs (Cambridge, MA); Love Will Make A Way (SATB) premiered by the Metropolitan Youth Chorale of New York at Lincoln Center; Get Busy (SATB) commissioned and premiered by Choirs of America Choral Festival and conducted by the composer at Carnegie Hall; A Christmas Medley (SATB), commissioned and recorded by Chanticleer on their CD, Chanticleer Sings Christmas; I Want to Die While You Love Me (SSAA), composed for the ACDA Women’s Choirs Commission Consortium; Gospel Trinity (SATB), a four-movement work for narrator, chorus, piano and orchestra, commissioned by the Brehm Center for Worship, Theology and the Arts/Fuller Theological Seminary (CA) and premiered at the Lincoln Center, NY; With What Shall I Come (SATB), composed for the St. Olaf Choir, Anton Armstrong, conductor, and premiered at Carnegie Hall; and Ev’ry Time I Feel the Spirit, an SSAA spiritual arranged for The Sofia Chamber Choir “Vassil Arnaudov”- Bulgaria, Southeastern Europe.

Dr. Powell serves as Professor of Voice and Coordinator of Voice Studies at Auburn University where she teaches voice and conductors the Women's Chorus. Additionally, Dr. Powell co-conducts the Concert Choir and AU Gospel Choir. She holds degrees from The Florida State University, Westminster Choir College, and Alabama State University. Her research focuses on the art of the African American spiritual and spirituals dialect; and voice care concerns for voice professionals (music educators, choral directors, and choral singers). She serves as a lecturer, composer-in-residence, clinician, conductor, and adjudicator at universities and festivals nationally and internationally, including recent commitments in Australia, England, Germany, Italy, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico. Dr. Powell serves yearly as a conductor for All-State and Honor Choirs throughout the country. Recent commitments include California, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Tennessee

Dr. Powell has received numerous awards including the prestigious “Luise Vosgerchian Teaching Award,” presented by the Harvard University Office for the Arts in 2022. Additionally, she was honored with the “Living Legend Award” presented by California State University African Diaspora Sacred Music Festival in Los Angeles; and was a recent recipient of the Marquis Who’s Who “Lifetime Achievement Award.” Dr. Powell was listed in the first edition of the international publication Who Is Who in Choral Music. Additionally, she has been included in Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers and Outstanding Young Women in America.

Dr. Powell is a member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP), the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), Chorus America, the National Association for Music Education (NAFME), the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), and the National Collegiate Choral Organization (NCCO).

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Bruce Rogers

Professor Bruce Rogers is the Director of Choral Activities at Mt. San Antonio College, in Walnut, California. In this role, he oversees the department’s various vocal and choral programs, which span the entire spectrum of music – from classical to jazz. He personally directs Mt. San Antonio College’s award-winning Chamber Singers and the elite vocal jazz ensemble, Singcopation.

Choirs under his direction have achieved top ranking in national and international competitions throughout the world, including performances in Concert Halls throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, China, Scotland, Wales, England, France, Italy, Germany, Poland, Austria, Switzerland, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, South Africa, Slovenia, Slovakia and China. Mr. Rogers' choirs have had the honor of performing at eight California State Conventions, a record setting fifteen American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) Regional and National Conventions as well as performing at three International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE) National Conventions and a 2017 performance at the Jazz Education Network (JEN) Conference. In the year 2001, Mr. Rogers became the first choral director in United States history to have two different choirs perform at both the IAJE National Convention and the ACDA National Convention, and in 2005, he achieved this special honor once again. In 2017 he again had two different choirs perform at both the JEN National Conference in New Orleans and the ACDA National Convention in Minneapolis.

Mr. Rogers’ guest conducting ventures outside of the United States, includes conducting at the AMIS International Honor Band and Choral Festival hosted by the International School at The Hague in the Netherlands, conducting at the ACCET Choral Conductor’s Workshop held in Melbourne, Australia, guest conducting the music of Franz Joseph Haydn in Vienna and Budapest with a Festival Choir and Orchestra honoring the 200th Anniversary of Haydn’s death, and was the headline clinician and guest conductor at the Australian National Choral Association (ANCA) Convention in Port Macquarie, Australia. He has guest conducted the New York Chamber Orchestra and Festival Chorus at Carnegie Hall on eight different occasions and has performed by special invitation at Lincoln Center.

In 2007, Professor Rogers was invited to conduct the “ACDA National Two-Year College Honor Choir” at the ACDA National Convention in Miami, Florida. He has been invited to serve as the American Judge on the jury panel for the International Musical Eisteddfod Competition in Llangollen, Wales on four different occasions and was a guest clinician at the University of North Texas Vocal Jazz Festival along with recording artist Tierney Sutton. Mr. Rogers has presented lectures, adjudicated, or conducted both classical and vocal jazz All-State and Collegiate Honor Choirs in twenty-eight states, the British Isles, Canada, Austria, Hungary, Poland, Australia, and the Netherlands.

For his many achievements, Mt. San Antonio College presented Professor Rogers with its prestigious “Faculty Member of the Year” award, the Upland Community Foundation honored him as a recipient of their 2010 "Spotlight Award for Outstanding Educator”, in 2013 he was awarded the "CMEA Pearson-Silver Burdett Choral Educator Award" honoring excellence in choral education and performance, and in 2014 he received the California Music Educators Association’s “Outstanding Music Educator’s Award”. He has also signed with Gentry Music to publish the “Bruce Rogers Choral Series”, which strives to discover challenging new choral works from throughout the world.

Headshot for Pearl Shangkuan

Pearl Shangkuan

Dr. Pearl Shangkuan is a highly sought-after conductor, lecturer and clinician who has led performances and workshops across six continents. Director of Choral Activities and Professor of Music at Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan, she is also chorus director of the Grand Rapids Symphony, a Grammy-nominated professional orchestra. Recently appointed as the Editor of Hinshaw Music, she also has a signature choral series with earthsongs and is the music editor of the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship Choral series published by GIA. Very active in the national choral leadership, she is the ACDA National President-Elect and has served on the Board of Directors of Chorus America, as well as ACDA division president and state president. She has conducted several times at Carnegie Hall and other major concert halls in the US and was an invited guest lecturer at the World Symposium for Choral Music held in Seoul, South Korea. Dr. Shangkuan has served on the jury of several international choral competitions in Europe and Asia and has led conducting masterclasses for the ACDA national conference, Chorus America conferences, the University of Michigan and the University of Illinois Choral Conducting Symposium among many institutions and organizations in the US. She has conducted numerous All State choirs, ACDA national and division honor choirs, and choral festivals nationally and internationally, and has headlined several ACDA state and other professional conferences. She has commissioned and premiered numerous choral works and her choirs have performed at ACDA national, division and state conferences. In 2013, Michigan ACDA honored her with the Maynard Klein Choral Award for “artistic excellence and lifetime leadership in choral music.

2021 Honorary Life Members

Read below to learn about NCCO’s 2021 Honorary Life Members, who will also be recognized at the 2023 National Conference.

Headshot for Anton Armstrong

Anton Armstrong

Anton Armstrong, Tosdal Professor of Music at St. Olaf College, became the fourth conductor of the St. Olaf Choir in 1990 after ten years in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he served on the faculty of Calvin University and conducted the Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus. He is a graduate of St. Olaf College and earned advanced degrees at the University of Illinois (MM) and Michigan State University (DMA). He is editor of a multicultural choral series for Earthsongs Publications and co-editor (with John Ferguson) of the revised St. Olaf Choral Series for Augsburg Fortress Publishers. In June 1998, he began his tenure as founding conductor of the Oregon Bach Festival Stangeland Family Youth Choral Academy.

Active as a guest conductor in the United States and abroad, Dr. Armstrong has conducted All-State choirs and choral festivals in nearly all 50 states. Additionally, he has served as guest conductor at international choral festivals and with luminary ensembles including the World Youth Choir, the Indonesia Youth Choir, the Ansan City Choir (South Korea), the Formosa Singers (Taiwan), the Houston Chamber Choir, the Vocal Arts Ensemble of Cincinnati, the Phoenix Chorale, the Westminster Choir and the Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square.

His honors and awards include the 2006 Baylor University Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching; the 2009 Distinguished Alumni Award from Michigan State University; the 2013 Saltzman Award from the Oregon Bach Festival; and a 2014 Regional Emmy for the PBS television program Christmas in Norway with The St. Olaf Choir.

Headshot for Marguerite L. Brooks

Marguerite L. Brooks

Marguerite L. Brooks served for thirty-five years as chair of the conducting program at the Yale School of Music and director of choral music at the Yale Institute of Sacred Music. As founding conductor of the Yale Camerata, one of Yale’s first campus/city arts collaborations, Brooks led hundreds of musical performances featuring some of the most innovative and wide-ranging programming in the field. She has long been a champion of new music by composers of a diverse array of gender, ethnic, and racial backgrounds. The Camerata and its chamber chorus have performed music from the middle ages to the present day, and the catalogue of composers ranges from Albinoni to Argento, from Palestrina to Pärt – along with Julia Wolfe, David Lang, Tawnie Olson, Aaron Jay Kernis, Caroline Shaw, Dominick DiOrio, Robert Kyr, Reena Esmail, and many more.

Brooks’s former students occupy positions of musical leadership at major churches and cathedrals around the world and in leading academic institutions. Among her students are the founding conductors of the Grammy-winning choirs Conspirare and Roomful of Teeth, and Grammy-nominated Seraphic Fire. Brooks has been active as a guest conductor, teacher, and clinician. She was a juror for the Eric Ericson conducting competition in Sweden, and has conducted, given master classes, taught, and adjudicated in North and South America, Europe, and Asia. She holds degrees from Mount Holyoke College and Temple University, and has served on the faculties of Smith and Amherst Colleges and the State University of New York at Stony Brook.

Brooks was cited by the Yale School of Music for cultural leadership in music, given its Gustave Stoeckel Award for Excellence in Teaching, and has received alumni awards for distinguished work in her field from both Mount Holyoke College and Temple University. Presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Connecticut chapter of the American Choral Directors Association in 2016 and by Choral Arts New England in 2019, Brooks is proud to have been honored as a Woman in History by the Barnard School. In 2020 Brooks received the Helen Kemp
Award for Lifetime Commitment to Excellence in Choral Music from the Eastern Division of ACDA. The National Collegiate Choral Organization, of which Brooks is a charter member and an honorary life member, celebrated her retirement in 2020 by initiating the Marguerite L. Brooks Commissioning Fund for New Choral Music.

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Janet Galván

Dr. Janet Galván, recently retired Director of Choral Activities at Ithaca College, was recognized by her New York colleagues for her contribution to choral music when she received the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) New York Outstanding Choral Director Award. Dr. Galván was also awarded the Ithaca College Faculty Excellence Award in 2018 and 2007 and the Distinguished Alumni Award in Music Education and Choral Music from the University of North Carolina in 2016.

As a guest conductor of choral and orchestral ensembles, Galván has conducted professional and university orchestras including Virtuosi Pragenses, the Madrid Chamber Orchestra, and the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra in choral/orchestral performances. She has conducted national, divisional, and state choruses throughout the United States for ACDA, the National Association for Music Educators (NAfME),and the Organization of American Kodály Educators (OAKE). She has worked with ensembles of all ages, from adult professional choirs to children’s choirs. She has conducted choruses and orchestras in venues such as Carnegie Hall, Boston’s Symphony Hall, Washington’s Constitution Hall, Minneapolis’ Symphony Hall, Pittsburgh’s Heinz Hall, and Nashville’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center. She has conducted her own choral ensembles in Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, and Avery Fisher Hall as well as in concert halls in Ireland, Italy, the Czech Republic, Austria, Canada, and Spain.

Galván was one of the first nine national honor choir conductors for ACDA and was the conductor of the North American Children’s Choir which performed annually in Carnegie Hall. She was also a guest conductor for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in 2002.
Galván has been a guest conductor and clinician in in the United Kingdom, Ireland, throughout Europe, Canada and in Brazil as well as at national music conferences and the World Symposium on Choral Music. She was on the faculty for the Carnegie Hall Choral Institute, the Transient Glory Symposium, the Oberlin Conducting Institute, and the Curso de Dirección de Coro in Madrid.

Galván’s students have received first place awards and have been finalists in both the graduate and undergraduate divisions of the American Choral Directors biennial National Choral Conducting Competition. Many of her former students are now conducting university and professional choirs and orchestras. In addition, she has been an artist in residence at many universities, leading masterclasses, working with the university choirs, and presenting sessions. Dr. Galván was a member of the Grammy Award-winning Robert Shaw Festival Singers (Telarc Recordings).

Galván was the editor of two choral music series and is the author of chapters in two books, Teaching Music through Performance in Choir, Volume 2 and The School Choral Program: Philosophy, Planning, Organizing and Teaching. She was also the series advisor to Latin Accents, a series with Boosey & Hawkes. She was a contributing author to multiple books, including Choral Cookbook; Standards, MENC Publication on Strategies for Implementing the National Standards; and The Choral Conductor's Companion. A chapter of Working With Young Singers, Vol. 1, was devoted to an interview with Galván.

Galván has contributed articles to many professional publications. Mostly recently, she co-authored the feature article about Virtual Choirs with Matt Clauhs in the Choral Journal. Her article on the changing voice was published in the International Federation of Choral Music Journal in August of 2007 and was reprinted in La Circulare del Secretariat de Corals Infantils de Catalunga.

Headshot for David Morrow

David Morrow

David Morrow is a native of Rochester, New York. He earned the Bachelor of Arts degree from Morehouse College in 1980. While at Morehouse, he became a member of Phi Beta Kappa, was awarded the Kemper Harreld Award for Excellence in Music, received departmental honors, and graduated Valedictorian of his class. He received the Master of Music degree from the University of Michigan in 1981 and was elected to Pi Kappa Lambda. He received the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music in 1995. He has studied conducting with Wendell Whalum, Thomas Hilbish, Elmer Thomas, John Leman, Earl Rivers, Elizabeth Green, Teri Murai, Fiora Contino and Donald Neuen.

Dr. Morrow has been a member of the Music faculty at Morehouse College since 1981. In 1987, he succeeded Dr. Wendell P. Whalum as Director of the Glee Club. In 2013, Dr. Morrow celebrated the 25th anniversary of his directorship of the Glee Club. Alumni and current students honored him singing Psalm 15; a piece composed for the occasion by alumnus Carlos Simon, and also presented him with a silver, engraved baton for his dedication in leadership. He is also Director of the Wendell P. Whalum Community Chorus, Co-Director of the Morehouse-Spelman Chorus, and Artistic Director and Conductor of The Atlanta Singers.

Dr. Morrow’s conducting honors include, conducting the Morehouse College Glee Club for the 1991 Kennedy Center Honors as part of the tribute to Robert Shaw, Conductor Laureate, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, conducting soprano Jessye Norman and the Spelman-Morehouse Chorus at Atlanta's Symphony Hall celebrating the 1994 Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday, conducting the combined choruses of the Atlanta University Center and Natalie Cole singing the National Anthem for Super Bowl XXVIII, conducting the Morehouse College Glee Club for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the 1996 Atlanta Centennial Olympic Games. In addition there are numerous performances with the Glee Club in the United States including its centennial celebrations, performances with the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra and the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, and international performances with the Glee Club include tours of Poland, Bermuda, the Bahamas, South Africa, Canada, Puerto Rico, Honduras, and Algeria.

In 2002, Dr. Morrow was guest conductor for Centro Ecuatoriano Norteamericano’s first Festival of Spirituals in Guayaquil, Ecuador, was the conductor of the 2009 “105 Voices” HBCU Concert Choir at the Kennedy Center and a recurring conductor on the masterworks series for the Colour of Music Festival in Charleston, South Carolina. In addition, he has conducted honors choruses across the country, lectured or conducted workshops in public schools, colleges and universities, including the Detroit Public Schools, University of Tennessee-Chattanooga, Cornell University, University of Cincinnati, Westminster Choir College and Rutgers University. His choral arrangements of spirituals and other African American folk music have been published by Alfred Music Publishers, Hal Leonard Music, and Oxford University Press, and GIA Music Publishers.

Dr. Morrow is a member of Metropolitan Atlanta Musicians Association, past president of The National Association of Negro Musicians, and is a member of the Georgia Council for the Arts. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Intercollegiate Men's Choruses, Inc. and Chorus America, Inc. He is a member of the American Choral Directors Association, Chorus America, the Georgia Music Educators Association, National Collegiate Choral Organization, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, is a “Friend of the Arts” member of Sigma Alpha Iota.

NCCO's Honorary Life Members

Charlene Archibeque (’15)
Anton Armstrong ('21)
William Bausano (’09)
Jerry Blackstone (’17)
Marguerite L. Brooks (’21)
Simon Carrington (’15)
Roland Carter ('23)
Joan Catoni Conlon (’19)
William Dehning (’11)*
Randi Von Ellefson (’17)
Joseph Flummerfelt (’13)*
Kenneth Fulton (’17)
Janet Galván ('21)
Vance George (’09)

Lisa Graham (’19)
Buddy James (’19)
Ann Howard Jones (’17)
Karen Kennedy (’19)*
Jerry McCoy (’19)
David Morrow ('21)
Robert Page (’08)*
Alice Parker (’11)
Rosephanye Powell ('23)
Bruce Rogers ('23)
Pearl Shangkuan ('23)
André J. Thomas (’17)
Dale Warland (’06)

* deceased

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