Phillip Riggs, who teaches music at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics in Durham, has won a Grammy for Music Educator of the Year.
The award recognizes those teachers – kindergarten through college in public or private schools – who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education.
Riggs, who has been teaching for 27 years and at the Durham school since 2008, was chosen from a field of more than 4,500 nominations from all 50 states. He is a past president of the North Carolina Band Directors Association and was chair of the N.C. High School All-State Band for eight years.
His win was announced Wednesday morning on CBS News.
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Former student Sarah Stafford, a middle school band director who nominated him for the award, told CBS: “I don’t really think he’s a teacher. I think he’s an inspirer. And by that I mean he’s not just an inspiration – he taught us to be inspirations.”
Riggs will be at the awards ceremony and in addition to the Grammy, will receive $10,000.