Progressive Music Advocates for Music Education on Capitol Hill

Progressive Music’s Director of Market Development, Mark Despotakis joined with other Members of the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) during the last week of March to meet with members of Congress and the Department of Education as part of the eighth-annual, Advocacy Fly-in for Music Education event in Washington, D.C. to support issues concerning the music products 525696_403998029612853_208115869201071_1511693_1940757281_nindustry.

During the advocacy meetings, NAMM Members asked that Congress reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act in a manner that removes the pressures in current law that force schools to narrow the curriculum at the expense of important core academic subjects, such as music and arts education, and to support a well-rounded education for all students.

“It’s very important for us to visit Capitol Hill and meet with our representatives to talk about the issues important to us,” noted Progressive Music’s Director of Market Development, Mark Despotakis. “Progressive Music knows the importance of music education for all students so it’s important for us to take the time to go to Washington and talk to our government officials about education policy.”

More than 25 NAMM Members, joined by Latin Grammy-nominated jazz guitarist and former NY Yankees legend Bernie Williams, as well as keyboardist and television star Scott Grimes met with approximately 70 Congressional and Senate offices and the Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Planning and Evaluation, with the U.S. Department of Education.

NAMM hosted a reception and dinner as part of the fly-in in honor of Dr. Anne L. Bryant, executive director of the National School Boards Association (NSBA). NAMM presented Dr. Bryant with an award for her many contributions to supporting music and arts education at schools across the country.

Music education is critical for childhood education and is strongly supported by both parents and educators. Research shows that 94% of Americans agree that playing a musical instrument can help a child’s overall development, while 91% agree that participation in music helps young people to be creative and innovative in their future career.

Students who participate in quality, school-based music education programs score significantly higher in math and English, schools with music programs have significantly higher attendance and graduation rates, and students themselves indicate music and arts programs create supportive environments that promote acceptance of constructive criticism and encourage appropriate risk taking.

More photos from the Fly-In are available on the Progressive Music Facebook page.

About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $17 billion music products industry and promote the pleasures and benefits of making music. NAMM’s activities and programs are designed to promote music making to people of all ages. NAMM is comprised of approximately 9,000 Member companies located in more than 52 countries. For more information about NAMM or the proven benefits of making music, interested parties can visit, call 800-767-NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on Twitter, Facebook and Google+

About Progressive Music 
Progressive Music is a business with a mission to enrich the quality of life serving as a cultural and community center for all who make music for a living or personal enjoyment, regardless of age of ability. Progressive Music is the link between the public and suppliers of quality musical merchandise. The Progressive Music staff are professionals whose expertise assist, guide, and motivate people in the selection of music industry products as well present music education to the public through lessons, seminars and advocacy. Progressive Music is committed to their products with an experienced and knowledgeable service center.  To learn more, visit or visit Progressive Music on FacebookTwitter or YouTube.