Los Alamos Native Receives NEA’s 2013-14 Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence

Charles Gerheart

Staff Report

Born and raised in Los Alamos, Charles (Chuck) Gerheart is New Mexico’s recipient of the NEA 2013-14 Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence. He is the son of Don and Jane Gerheart of White Rock who were both band directors for Los Alamos Public Schools.

Gerheart directs the Cobre High School Band and has been recognized for his work with Cobre music students. He began his teaching career in the Clayton Municipal Schools as the director of bands before becoming director of music at Cobre High School. Beginning in 1999, while in his third year of teaching, Gerheart led the Cobre High School Indian Pride Band to the first of a dozen state championships in the AAA Division of the New Mexico Activities Association State Band Contest.

Every year since, the tiny band (averaging 24 students each year) has received a rating of “Superior” at the New Mexico Music Educators Association annual District Concert Band Festival. Each year from 1998 to 2012, the band placed in the top three of its class at the New Mexico State Tournament of Bands Marching Competition and took the competition eight of those years.

Gerheart will travel to Washington, D.C. to attend a Feb. 7 gala event during which he and 35 other state winners will be recognized and considered for the Foundation’s national honor.

Phylicia Rashād, the Tony Award-winning actress best known for her role as Clair Huxtable on “The Cosby Show,” will emcee the NEA Foundation Salute to Excellence in Education Gala. Watch live streaming video of Rashād and the educators and national awardees on neafoundation.org beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET, Feb. 7.

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