Amro Music Champions Best Communities for Music Education

Elizabeth Dale

The Best Communities for Music Education (BCME) is a signature program of The NAMM Foundation. Now in its 24th year, the program recognizes and celebrates schools and districts for their support and commitment to music education and efforts to assure access to music for all students as part of a well-rounded education.

A BCME distinction is not only a source of pride for communities and their schools and districts, mirroring the sentiments found in the well-known “Best Places to Live” lists. It is also an important marker that NAMM members can capitalize on to drive success in their businesses.

Best Communities for Music Education

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A perfect case study of a symbiotic relationship between a BCME community and a NAMM member comes from Amro Music and its champion of music education advocacy, Amro Music Vice President Nick Averwater.

Averwater commented on the importance of BCME, saying, “It allows us to recognize the outstanding work that educators are doing in the classroom every day. Often, their hard work goes unnoticed. Being named a Best Community is a great way to highlight our outstanding educators, administrators, students, and the communities supporting these vital programs.”

Beyond the recognition of educators, Averwater expressed the benefit of BCME from a retail perspective. He said, “It generates excitement about music generally. Earning a BCME distinction highlights music to people that might not be aware of the success and strength of their community’s music program. This becomes an excellent advocacy, recruiting, and publicity tool for schools, educators, districts, and retailers.”

Amro and Averwater have used BCME to uplift sales and outreach within the company for many years. He believes strongly that NAMM members can create initiatives and programs that mutually benefit BCME school districts. The initiatives include supplemental communication to local schools and districts, offering information about the award, and requesting, internally, that the business’s educational representatives “nominate” districts they believe would qualify for BCME recognition.

After a school is recognized as a BCME, Amro Music celebrates the recognition and offers to acknowledge the achievement at their school board meeting publicly. The retailer also prints the BCME certificates from NAMM and frames them for each recipient in their region, encouraging all to display them with pride in their auditoriums, offices, and music classrooms. Averwater says, “We want everyone to see that this district is a Best Communities recipient. Selfishly, being present in front of a school board in a congratulatory capacity provides a great opportunity to be a community partner for programs across our territory.”


Regarding ways other NAMM members can be involved in promoting BCME, Averwater suggests starting small, working alongside one or two school districts in your area, and inviting one or two more each year to participate. “Once a school receives the recognition, they are typically on ‘auto-pilot’ and will apply without any additional reminders, year over year. By setting a goal of assisting one to two new school districts to apply, you can gradually grow the number of BCME applicants in your area and become a stronger partner for music in the process.”

For more information on BCME, including the application, which closes on January 31, please visit and to learn more from Amro Music, please visit