Saturday evening I was fortunate to be able to attend the Community Performance Series sponsored appearance of the National Public Radio series, "From the Top", a fabulous showcase for talented young musicians. The eight performers, aged 10 to 17, were the most talented young people I have ever heard. In addition, I found their stories describing dedication, hard work and sacrifice to be truly inspiring.
My favorite part of the evening, however, was when Christopher O'Riley, host of the show, gave a shout out to one of our own, Theresa Witmer, recently named 2012 Richard H. Snook Outstanding Band Director by the New York State Band Directors Association (NYSBDA). Families in Potsdam over the last 25 years have all known what a wonderful teacher and role model Theresa is, and it was gratifying that now the rest of the nation (and world) will hear about her. As is her style, Theresa's first words to Christopher were to extoll the merits of all of the music teachers in the North Country. She is one of the best examples of a great teacher that the North Country has and I hope that young teachers, from all curricula, take the opportunity to learn the best teaching practices that she has to offer.