About Us

Who Are We?

The Pennsylvania Music Educators Association (PMEA) is a statewide nonprofit organization of over 4,500 members, dedicated to promoting the musical development of all Pennsylvanians. The present membership evolved from a small group of band directors dating from 1933. Today, the organization includes those engaged in music instruction at all levels, from preschool through college and university, as well as those in the music industry, merchandising and publishing. The organization promotes and supports quality music education, learning and performance as well as promoting and supporting music education in schools and communities. PMEA is affiliated with The National Association for Music Education, NAfME.

Pennsylvania Music Educators Association Vision

The Pennsylvania Music Educators Association will be the leading voice for music education in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania Music Educators Association Mission

The mission of the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association is to advance comprehensive and innovative music education for all teachers and students through quality teaching, rigorous learning, and meaningful music engagement.


PMEA Governance Information

PMEA is in the process of reviewing its bylaws and governance. Below you will find some FAQ’s regarding this process. If you have any questions at any time, please do not hesitate to contact Henry Pearlberg, Dennis Emert and/or Abi Young.

How long as the current structure been in place?

PMEA’s current governance structure was approved and subsequently put into place approximately five years ago. The impetus to review PMEA’s governance at that time came from the organization’s then strategic plan, developed by a committee of PMEA members from across the state, which stated “Update and refine PMEA’s organizational/governance structure to reflect the mission of the organization and to effectively address issues in music education in Pennsylvania in the 21st century.”

A proposal was created and approved by the board and subsequently the membership in 2011. The result was the creation of four councils – Advancement of Music Ed (Advocacy), Professional Development, Student Events, Teacher Training, Recruitment and Retention which all included representation from each PMEA district, and a fifth “position based” council – Past State Officers – which includes everyone who served as a State President or C/I/ PD Chair. The other change was switching the name of the Curriculum/Instruction to Professional Development (so switching from C/I representatives to PD representatives).

What is the impetus behind the governance re-structure?

The current changes being proposed are to enhance what’s already in place and is not a complete restructure of the governance. When the governance was restructured in 2011, the State Board at the time requested that the new structure be reviewed in a couple of years. So in 2014 (three years after the new structure was put in place) PMEA worked with a consultant at the January State Board meeting to help facilitate discussion on what was and wasn’t working. A governance task force was created to propose recommendations for changes to the structure which were presented to the board in July (the presentation was recorded and put on the PMEA website: https://www.dropbox.com/s/1ny4dj3kg8b7946/PMEA%20Governance%20Task%20Force%20Presentation.MPG?dl=0 – as well as included in all-member emails). 

What are the benefits of the proposed governance changes?

The PMEA Governance Task Force found that switching the C/I chairs to Professional Development reps created a hole in the area of curriculum development that needed to be filled (especially with the recently released National Core Arts Standards) so one of the proposed changes is to add a Curriculum/Instruction Council (in addition to the Professional Development Council).

The PD Chairs expressed concern about how their issues rarely were discussed at a State Board meeting and that the council was more beneficial – hence the proposal to remove them from the board. So with the proposed changes the board would be downsized slightly to include: the state president, president-elect and immediate past president, the twelve district president and then the council chairs from: Advocacy (new name for Advancement of Music Ed), C/I, Professional Development, Student Events and Teacher Training Recruitment and Retention (the Past State Officers will already have representation on the board via the Immediate Past President). 


  1. PMEA Bylaws (5.6.16)
  2. New Strategic Plan adopted 1/2014