BOSTON, December 18, 2003 -- Berklee College of Music President Lee Eliot Berk will receive the International Association for Jazz Education's Humanitarian Award on Thursday, January 22, 2004, at the organization's 31st Annual Conference in New York City. The IAJE conference, which runs from January 21 through 24, will attract over 7,000 jazz educators, musicians, and enthusiasts from over 35 countries.
The IAJE Humanitarian Award will be presented to President Lee Eliot Berk during Thursday evening's concert in the Grand Ballroom of the New York Hilton. Says IAJE Executive Director Bill McFarlin, During his tenure as president of Berklee College of Music, Lee's open-door policy and his creation of the Berklee City Music program, which has provided full-tuition scholarships to over 50 inner-city youths, are examples of his deep commitment to putting students first. Furthermore, Lee has unselfishly given back to the field of jazz education through his service on numerous non-profit boards, including IAJE and his personal philanthropy, and his true love of jazz. No one is more deserving of this award."
The Humanitarian Award honors IAJE members whose love for teaching transcends the usual academic environment. Each year the award is presented to an individual who, over the past 20 or more years, has helped to perpetuate jazz and strengthen jazz education, and who embodies the four elements of humanism: dedication, non-prejudice, altruism, and love. Some of the past recipients of the IAJE Humanitarian Award have been George Wein, Ellis Marsalis, John LaPorta, Ed Thigpen, Alvin Batista, Jimmy Lyons, and Rufus Reid.
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