The Nate Metschke Creative Teacher Award was created in 2019 in honor of Nate Metschke, who passed away from cancer at the age of 40. Metschke was known for his creativity, joyful spirit, and positivity. A candidate for the Nate Metschke Award demonstrates originality, imagination, and overall excellence in his or her teaching. Candidates must possess at least 8 years of teaching experience, be a band director in Nebraska, and be a member of NSBA. Nominations for this award may come from school administrators, fellow teachers, students, community organizations, or other individuals who possess a knowledge of the nominee’s career.
2021 Recipient - Chad Dean
2022 Recipient - Mike Sindt
2023 Recipient - Ashley Leader
The Donald A. Lentz Outstanding Bandmaster Award is intended to recognize an individual who has made an outstanding contribution throughout his or her career, not to honor an individual for only a given year's work. The recipient of the Lentz Award will be viewed as one of the many superior band directors in Nebraska, and over the years a number exceptional teachers will be so honored. A candidate for the Outstanding Bandmaster Award must be a band director in Nebraska and an NSBA member. Nominations for this award may come from school administrators, fellow teachers, students, community organizations or other individuals who possess a knowledge of the nominee's career.
2023 Recipient - Ryan Placek
This Jack R. Snider Young Band Director Award was established by the NSBA executive board in honor of the 25th anniversary of the Association. Young directors from all geographic areas of Nebraska will be considered, with the possibility that several directors will receive the award. Nominees must be current members of NSBA, presently teaching in Nebraska, and in their third through seventh year of teaching. Nominations are requested from college directors, student teaching supervisors, school administrators, fellow directors, students or their parents.
2023 Recipients - Jason Stech, Morgan Sentelle, and Aaron Mathis
The Duane Johnson Distinguished Service Award was established by the NSBA executive board in 2009. Nominees must be current members of NSBA, presently teaching in Nebraska. There is no application process - winners are selected from recommendations made to the NSBA Board.
2023 Recipients - Kearney Band Parents Association (award accepted by Rick Mitchell and Nathan LeFeber), and Jay Gilbert
The Outstanding Administrator Award honors an administrator for his/her support, interest, and encouragement of the school instrumental music program.
2023 Recipient - Brett Schwartz (center), Otte Blair Middle School
NSBA is offering up to three $500 scholarships for current band directors pursuing professional growth opportunities. This can come in the form of working on an advanced degree, attending a clinic, seminar, workshop, convention, etc. Applicants must be current members of NSBA. A committee will select recipients at their discretion, based on established criteria and parameters.
2023 Recipients - Alex Steinke, Aaron Mathis, and Marques Eckhoff
Two $300 scholarships are available for NSBA band directors with a minimum of three years teaching experience. Applicants must be enrolled in an instrumental music education graduate course. This course does not need to be taken at a Nebraska institution. Scholarships can be awarded to the same person more than once.
2023 Recipients - Aaron Mathis and Marques Eckhoff
Undergraduate Scholarship in the amount of $500 is presented to a college student who has completed a minimum of five semesters in a Nebraska College or university music education program, with a wind or percussion instrument as the primary area of study.
2023 Recipient - Quin Sexton- UNO
NSBA presents the Bob Palensky Scholarship in the name and memory of Bob Palensky, a band director who epitomized the NSBA motto “Better Bands for Nebraska.” This scholarship is given to honor the memory of directors who have passed away, and for their contributions to the schools and band students of Nebraska.
2023 Recipients -David Ramirez, and Nuhad Khan (not pictured)
2023 Retirees - Kevin Koopmann and Norm Edwards
This award is given to the total high school band program whose members have an average GPA of 3.5 or higher. This applies to high school band programs that consist of students in grades 9-12 or grades 10-12. A plaque will be presented to qualifying band programs during the Awards Banquet at the NSBA Spring Convention.