Olmstead to Be Honored with Naming of Percussion Rehearsal Hall

Posted on 9/16/2011 2:19:11 PM
From left: Dr. David Werner, IUP interim president; Jim Miller, chairman of the IUP Council of Trustees University Relations Committee; and Dr. Gary Olmstead and his wife, M. Michelina Olmstead

The Council of Trustees on September 15, 2011, formally approved the naming of a rehearsal hall for a professor emeritus of the Department of Music.

The space in Cogswell Hall, home to the Music Department, honors Gary James Olmstead, a forty-five-year member of the department’s faculty.

In approving the resolution for the naming of the hall, the trustees recognized Olmstead for his “contributions as one of the most highly regarded leaders in percussion education.”

He was further recognized for his innovative teaching practices and his reputation in the areas of private teaching, ensemble directing, workshop presentation, and pedagogical publications.

Olmstead retired from IUP in 2003.

In 1998, the department and Olmstead’s friends and family established the Dr. Gary J. Olmstead Percussion Scholarship for percussion students at IUP.

Olmstead’s professional honors have included the following:

  • 2004 Lifetime Achievement in Education Award, Percussive Arts Society
  • 2001 Hall of Fame Award, Percussive Arts Society
  • 1994 Distinguished Faculty Award for Teaching, IUP
  • 1992 Founder’s Award, Pennsylvania State Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society
  • 1991 Ludwig Drummer Award, personally presented by William F. Ludwig, Jr.
  • 1987 Achievement in Music Award, Ohio University
  • 1985 Teacher of the Year, Pennsylvania Music Teachers Association