TAMPA, FL – This month, business leader Crystal Morris of Tampa-based Gator Co. will travel to Washington, D.C. to advocate for all children to have access to quality, comprehensive school music education programs. Morris will join music industry leaders and artists as part of a delegation of music education advocates during the annual National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Music Education Advocacy D.C. Fly-In, May 20-23, 2019.
The issue takes on special importance this year as the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), is implemented in states and local school districts under programs and funding available via the federal education law. Morris will meet with Members of Congress and other elected officials to advocate for the funding of school music programs across the nation and to discuss the multitude of benefits music education espouses such as increased brain function, focus and language development.
“Research has shown the enormously positive impact music and arts have on our society, especially as it relates the development of our children,” Morris said. “Music not only enriches cultures and people’s lives at any age, it helps children develop their cognitive or motor skills, which is fundamental to their health and growth. Advocating for music and arts education is critical to ensuring this type of education and enrichment continues for all generations.”
The week of advocacy work will begin on Monday, May 20, with a Day of Service assisting a local school. On Tuesday, Morris will participate in a full day of advocacy training, as well as in developing a state-level advocacy program. On Wednesday, she will head to Capitol Hill for a series of meetings with Members of Congress, their staff and other elected officials and stakeholders in education policy.
Since founding Gator in 2000, Morris and her team have been focused on giving back to the local and music communities. Morris has been involved with the NAMM Fly-In since 2012 and works with industry and local leaders on advocating for music and arts education, career development and women’s leadership.
Photos of the advocacy Fly-In will be available by emailing [email protected].
Gator is a premier manufacturer of carrying cases, gear, stands and accessories designed to meet the rigors of the traveling musician, stage or studio professional. Our cases include wooden, plastic molded, lightweights, and gig bags for guitars, pro-audio equipment, percussion, AV equipment, DJ, and band instruments. Gator takes great pride in the research and development that goes into every product to create the best solution on the market in both quality and utility. Gator also specializes in OEM manufacturing to meet the private label needs of distributors and instrument manufacturers.
The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $17 billion music products industry. NAMM is comprised of approximately 10,400 member companies located in 104 countries. NAMM events and members fund the NAMM Foundation’s efforts to promote the pleasures and benefits of music, and advance active participation in music making across the lifespan. For more information about NAMM, please visit www.namm.org, call 800.767.NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.