Northwest ACDA Leadership and Service Award Winners

This award was begun in 2000. It is presented at the bi-annual conference to an individual who exemplifies the following characteristics:

Someone who:

1. has spent their career furthering the goals and mission of ACDA,

2. is dedicated to excellence in performance of choral literature,

3. has been a leader in the organization at various levels (state, division, national),

4. has presented sessions or had his/her choir perform at convention concert hours or for interest sessions,

5. is recognized as a mentor for other conductors and teachers.


H. Royce Saltzman 

Royce Saltzman is Professor Emeritus of Choral Music at the University of Oregon. His masters degree is from Northwestern University, his doctorate from the University of Southern California. Prior to coming to the University of Oregon in 1964, he taught at Messiah College, Upland College, and the University of Southern California.

Dr. Saltzman is co-founder and Director Emeritus of the Oregon Bach Festival; past National President of the

American Choral Directors Association; and from 1985 to 1993, and from 1998 to 1999, served as President of the International  Federation for Choral Music (IFCM), a world organization which has a membership of conductors, choirs, and national organizations in more than 70 countries. He has been IFCM’s representative in the planning of world symposia in Vienna, Stockholm, Vancouver, Sydney and Rotterdam, and was a member of the artistic committee for the 2002 World Symposium on Choral Music in Minneapolis.

In Washington, D.C. Dr. Saltzman served on six review panels for the National Endowment for the Arts. He has been on jury panels for choir competitions in Argentina, Canada, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, and the United States. He is a member of the International Honorary Committee of Zimriya Festival, a world assembly of choirs in Israel; the Advisory Board of the Acdaemia Bach de Venezuela in Caracas; the Board of Trustees, International Bachakademie, Stuttgart, Germany; and has been an Honorary Advisor for the China International Choir Festival, Beijing.

Dr. Saltzman is a recipient of the Bundesverdienstkreuz, the Officer’s Cross of the Order of Merit, Germany’s highest medal of honor for distinguished cultural service; Northwestern University’s Alumni Merit Award; the Outstanding Alumnus Award from the Thornton School of Music, University of Southern California; the University of Oregon’s Distinguished Service Award; Eugene, Oregon's "First Citizen" Award; and received an Alexander von Humboldt award, Bonn, Germany, for study of choral conducting in Germany. He has been a lecturer and/or clinician in Argentina, China, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, Venezuela, and the United States. He is listed in Who's Who in American Music and International Who's Who in Music.


Lynn Sjolund

Lynn Sjolund is Conductor Emeritus of the Rogue Valley Chorale, (Medford, Oregon area) and served as Artistic Director from 1973 until 2013. During his tenure the Chorale presented concerts to the community several times a year, toured Europe seven times, performed at Carnegie Hall and made a lasting impact on the Southern Oregon community. Under Mr. Sjolund’s artistic direction the Rogue Valley Chorale performed

many of the great works including Handel’s Messiah, Brahm’s Requiem, Bach’s Mass in B Minor and St. Matthew Passion, Mozart’s Requiem and Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb and Bernstein’s Mass. Mr. Sjolund is well known as a conductor and choral clinician. He has directed festival groups and adjudicated choruses around the country. His tenure with the Chorale began with its founding and spanned four decades, with the exception of three years when he was Director of Choral Studies at Loyola University in New Orleans. Mr. Sjolund taught for many years in the Medford Public Schools and served as President of the Oregon Music Educator’s Association and of the Northwest Division of the Music Educators National Conference. He also served on the American Choral Directors Association Board of Directors for Oregon.


Paul Schulz

A native of Richmond Michigan, Paul W. Schultz has accrued a distinguished career as a teacher and conductor throughout the United States spanning over five decades. He received both Bachelor of Music and Master of Arts degrees from Central Michigan University, a Ph.D. in music education from Michigan State University, and has studied conducting with Helmuth Rilling at the Internationale Bachakademie in Stuttgart, Germany. His choral ensembles consistently receive the highest acclaim for their standards in repertoire, interpretation,  

and musicianship. They have appeared at the state, regional, and national conventions of both the Music Educators National Conference and the American Choral Directors Association.

Dr. Schultz taught in the public schools in Michigan for 20 years and has served on the faculties of Tacoma School of the Arts, University of Puget Sound, and Michigan State University. He retired in 2006 after 44 years of teaching. Dr. Schultz prepared and conducted the major choral presentations for the Third World Harp Congress Convention in 1996. He also served as artistic conductor with Tacoma City Ballet and was the founder and first conductor of the Tacoma Symphony Chorus. 

Dr. Schultz founded the Northwest Repertory Singers in August 2001. NWRS has quickly become one of the Puget Sound region’s most revered choral ensembles. They are a very select group of distinguished Puget Sound musicians dedicated to performing a wide variety of quality choral music at a high artistic level. Performances during their first decade have received hearty acclaim and played to capacity audiences.

They sponsored the Rolling Requiem in 2002 to commemorate the anniversary of September 11, 2001. This performance of Mozart’s Requiem was presented at 8:46 a.m. on September 11, 2002 to an audience of more than 900 people at Mason United Methodist Church in Tacoma’s Proctor District. The choir has presented collaborations with The Coats, Tacoma Youth Chorus, Lake Union Civic Orchestra, and Northwest Sinfonietta. They received critical acclaim for their 2006 performances of Mozart’s Requiem with Northwest Sinfonietta under the direction of Christophe Chagnard. Their performance for Seattle Pro Musica’s American Masterpieces Choral Festival in June, 2007, received the highest praise from composer Morten Lauridsen and conductor Dale Warland. April, 2008 featured two performances of Beethoven’s Symphony #9 (Choral) with Northwest Sinfonietta and conductor Christophe Chagnard. Maestro Chagnard stated these performances were one of the highlights in the history of Northwest Sinfonietta. The Tacoma News Tribune concluded: “What a joy to have an orchestra and singers of this caliber performing works like this—it’s something Tacoma should be proud of.”  Dr. Schultz has twice received the Distinguished Service Award given by the Washington American Choral Directors Association. He was the recipient of the prestigious American Choral Directors Association Northwestern Division Lifetime Achievement and Leadership Award in 2004. He is a life member of the American Choral Directors Association and a member of Chorus America. Dr. Schultz remains active as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator throughout the United States. He resides in Gig Harbor with his wife, composer Dr. Donna Gartman Schultz. 


Connie Branton

Connie Branton is a graduate of Westminster Choir College in Princeton, N.J., with a Bachelor’s degree in church music.   She earned a Master’s degree in music education from Boise State University.   Her work in the public schools as a director of junior high/middle school choir in Idaho was exemplary. Long before her retirement from school work in 2008, Connie founded and directed Whitney Women’s Chorale in Boise, ID,

She directed this group for 27 years. This choir toured in the Western US and Canada, Alaska, New England and Texas.  The Chorale also made three trips to Europe on singing tours. Connie is an active member of the American Choral Directors Association and is a former president of the Northwestern Division of the organization.


Howard Meharg

Howard Meharg taught vocal music in Castle Rock, Kelso and Longview, Washington for over thirty years.

Howard is active in the American Choral Directors Association, serving as webmaster/editor of the six-

state divisional online newsletter and the website for the Oregon state chapter of that organization. At one point he handled the website for all states in the NW Region as well as that for the SW ACDA and for the state of Arkansas.

He served as president of the Washington chapter of ACDA in 1969 and then again in 1996. Along with colleagues, Twyla Brunson, Karen Fulmer, and Paul Schulz, he was instrumental in the start of WA ACDA's Summer Institute.

His high school choirs consistently received top ratings in annual music events in SW Washington and his choirs were invited to sing at ACDA conferences on several occasions as well as for conventions of the music educators group, WMEA.

Howard's professional work includes singing baritone in two tours of the Norman Luboff Choir and he, along with colleagues Bruce Browne and Larry Marsh, founded (1982) and sang in Male Ensemble Northwest, a group of about twelve conductors from northwest states that continues today to inspire young men to sing as well as provide dazzling concerts for audiences everywhere they go. Howard retired from such professional singing in 2002.

He founded Chor Anno, a 30 voice mixed choir made up primarily of choral director colleagues, in 2009. He was chief conductor of the group for about the first five years, but in 2017 changed places with Nicole Lamartine. Nicole is now conductor, Howard is Associate Conductor.

In addition to his current website work, Howard has edited print newsletters (before the days of wide-spread use of the Internet) for WA-ACDA as well as for the NW division. He's served as president of the Washington chapter of ACDA twice and has been on boards for both organizations off and on for over twenty years.

He has directed church choirs during a large part of his career, the last such role for ten years (2002-2012) at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, Longview, Washington.

Howard now lives in Vancouver, Washington with his wife, Karen, their dogs, Kate and McGee, a blind rescue dog from Puerto Rico who speaks Spanish (apparently, for he doesn't mind in English), and two harassed cats.


Washington State Teacher of the Year. 

Karen Fulmer is retired from the Sumner School District after teaching choral music for 31 years at the junior high and high school levels and serving as district Music Coordinator. Karen graduated from Kelso High School. She holds Bachelor's and Master's Degrees in secondary music education from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, WA.

"Karen Fulmer represents all that is good, caring, and compassionate about teachers and the education profession today. To this day, I don't believe I have heard anyone express a philosophy of education that is more accurate and perceptive - something only experience and commitment can create." Judith A. Billings, Superintendent of Public Instruction, October 16, 1996

With regard to her term as president of NWACDA, Karen reports, "The division was in a state of growth and development during the early 2000s. Connie Branton and I wanted to see our R & S chairs take a more active role in the development of interest sessions for division conventions and contribute on a regular basis to Northwest Notes. We made it a priority to fill vacancies and give a voice to each position on the board. The convention in Tacoma was very successful despite wintry weather." 

Karen Fulmer

Karen was the vocal music teacher at Bonney Lake High School in the Sumner School District. Previously she taught for 28 years at Sumner Junior High and served as district music coordinator. From 1989-1991 she served as Washington ACDA state president. Karen has worked at the state level developing classroom based performance assessments and served locally as the board president for the Northwest Repertory Singers. She is a recipient of the Christa McAuliffe Award for Excellence in Education and in 1997 was named


Bruce Browne


Dr. Bruce Browne is Professor Emeritus of Music at Portland State University. He is also Conductor Emeritus of the Portland Symphonic Choir and founder and director of the professional choir, Choral Cross-Ties. In October 2000, he was named by the Music Educators national conference (MENC) as one of the outstanding music educators in higher education.

Choirs under Browne's direction have performed at five ACDA National Conventions, four MENC Nationals, an ISME Convention, and numerous regional and state Conventions. He has been guest director / clinician in several countries including Spain, Greece, Canada, and England, and has appeared in several states in similar capacities. Browne has been awarded sabbaticals to teach in Guadalajara and in London, and has been Visiting Professor at the University of Iowa. He has been jurist, clinician or guest conductor in virtually every region of the country, and in Germany, Spain, Estonia, England and Mexico. He has served on panels for the National Endowment of the Arts. 

Dr. Browne has been guest conductor for the Edmonton, Canada Pro Coro, and the Phoenix Bach Choir. Since his retirement from PSU, Browne has guest conducted in several universities around the U.S, including a one-year appointment at Boise State University. He has recorded on the labels of Freshwater, Albany and Koch. November 13 will mark the national release of the first CD in English of the cycles of Veljo Tormis, coming out on Clarion Records. 

Dr. Browne has served on national panels for NEA, and as Regional ACDA President. His choirs can be heard on the labels of Koch, Albany, Freshwater and Clarion. He has worked closely with Frieder Bernius, Eric Ericson, Robert Shaw and Morten Lauridsen, and prepared choirs for James DePriest, Helmut Rilling, Margaret Hillis and Andrew Parrot.

"ACDA NW was in very good stead after the presidency of Richard Clark. Thanks to the help of ACDA volunteers such as Howard Meharg, Gerry Harris, and Larry Marsh, the '84 Northwest Convention in Portland was a great success, with the highest attendance ever recorded. Clinicians were John Rutter, Eric Ericson and Charlene Archibecque."


Twyla  Brunson


Twyla Brunson is a graduate of the University of Idaho with a BME and MM, Vocal Performance, She taught junior high choral music for 33 years, 15 in Walla Walla and 18 in Sumner, Washington. 

Retired from teaching, she is currently Music Curriculum Chair for the Sumner School District and has been an adjunct faculty at PLU. She has studied at the Kodaly Institute in Esztergom, Hungary, the Orff Institute in

Salzburg, Austria, and St. John’s and Kings’ Colleges at Cambridge University in England. 

In 1988 she was a member of the Washington State Visual and Performing Arts Delegation to the Peoples’ Republic of China exploring the arts of that Asian country. 


Twyla was named WMEA Valley Region Outstanding Music Educator and recipient of the Christa McAuliffe Award for Excellence in Education in 2001. An active musician and adjudicator, she has sung with the Oregon Bach Festival Choir, Seattle Symphony Chorale, Walla Walla Choral Society, and currently sings with Opus 7 as well as Chor Anno.

"During my tenure as NW Division President, I worked to maintain the high level of excellence that the division had achieved: keeping quality people in R & S chairs, encouraging them play active roles in development of their areas, and attracting new membership to the division. 


One of the challenges during my tenure was having the 2004 division convention in Boise, Idaho. Since much of the division membership is located in the I-5 corridor, I wanted the membership to experience the choral commitment that exists in every part of our division. The convention was an unqualified success attracting only a few less attendees than the 2002 convention despite being out of the I-5 corridor. 


We also had a large number of student members who worked during the convention in exchange for part of their registration fee. I was gratified this experience gave future choral directors a direct link to the benefits of being involved in ACDA. The division leadership that preceded me gave me great help during my tenure. 


"I treasure the friendships gained through ACDA because of the love of the choral art and am a richer person for them."


Richard Nance

Richard Nance is the Director of Choral Activities at Pacific Lutheran University where he has worked since 1992. At PLU, Nance conducts the Choir of the West, Choral Union, and teaches classes in choral conducting.

Nance holds bachelors and masters degrees from West Texas State University and the Doctor of Musical Arts from Arizona State University. He has studied conducting with Hugh Sanders, Douglas McEwen, and

David Stocker, and composition with Joseph Nelson and Randall Shinn. 

Nance is an active member of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) and has held many state and divisional offices. Nance's choirs have appeared at several ACDA conventions and have toured Europe. His choral works are regularly performed by school, university, church, community, and festival choirs. 

In 2002 Nance was selected to compose the prestigious Raymond Brock Memorial Composition for the American Choral Directors Association. Other composers who have shared this honor include Gian-Carlo Menotti, Eric Whitacre, Morten Lauridsen, Rene Clausen, Daniel Pinkham, Samuel Adler, and Gwyneth Walker.


Bill Mayclin

William Mayclin retired in 2002 after teaching choral music at Pendleton High School and Pendleton Junior High for 30 years. In 1990, he was selected as the Phi Delta Kappa (Chapter 1122) Outstanding Secondary Teacher. His high school choirs sang at two northwest division conventions of the Music Educators National Conference and at two state conventions of the Oregon Music Educators Association. They also were invited

to sing at Expo ’74 in Spokane and Expo ’86 in Vancouver, BC.

Bill attended Clark College in Vancouver, Washington for two years earning an Associate in Arts degree in 1969. He then completed his Bachelor of Music in Education degree at the University of Portland in 1971 graduating “Maxima Cum Laude.” He received his Master of Arts in Vocal Performance from Eastern Washington State College in 1973.

He has been Vice Chairman and Chairman of the Oregon Music Education Association’s District VI. He was the Oregon ACDA President from 1987-1989. In 1995, he was the Site Chairman at the Kennedy Center for the ACDA National Convention in Washington, D.C. and was the National Chairman of the ACDA Advocacy Steering Committee from 1995-1997. He was the Program Chairman for three National ACDA Conventions: Chicago in 1999, Los Angeles in 2005 and Chicago in 2011. He was Organizing Chairman of the Oregon All-State Choir in 1982, the All-Northwest Choir in 1985, and the 1990 ACDA Northwest High School Men’s Honor Choir. 

In Pendleton, Bill has served on the boards of The Arts Council of Pendleton, Pendleton Air Museum, Umatilla County Cultural Coalition, Education Foundation of Pendleton, and Umatilla County Historical Society. He has also been active as a performer and musical director with the College-Community Theatre. 

He is the choir director at Peace Lutheran Church and the director of the Pendleton Men’s Chorus.

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