In recognition of Dr. William R. Lee’s service spanning twenty-seven years, the 1,500- member Tennessee Music Education Association (TMEA) has inducted the UTC Professor and Coordinator of Music Education into its Hall of Fame. The awards ceremony was a feature of the annual conference of the organization, held this year in Chattanooga.
“I am deeply honored by this,” Lee said of the award. “My association with the TMEA has given me the opportunity to work with some great people, many from our local schools, who are deeply committed to the needs of children and music; they are truly giving people.”
Lee was the sole candidate chosen to receive the honor.
Past recipients include local Chattanooga Symphony and Opera clarinetist Jay Craven and violinist Sollie Fott, a former Chattanoogan, UC graduate, and professor of music at Austin Peay State University who currently works in studio recording and television in Nashville.
Lee came to The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 1985 as Coordinator of Music Education and immediately became involved in the Tennessee Music Education Association. A former high school band director, he has conducted orchestras and choirs as well as wind groups.
Lee reorganized the UTC graduate program in music in the 1990’s and has mentored dozens of undergraduate and graduate students in music education.
As a University brass teacher he toured France and Germany in 2003 and 2004 and has lectured on the history of music education in Europe and in the United States. He has published widely in his field, most recently a chapter on the history of North American school ensembles for Oxford University Press. He received the Music Educators National Conference history special interest group award in 2004 for service and scholarship.
In 2011, he organized a special scholarly meeting in Chattanooga that drew scholars from all over the United States and several foreign countries.