Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. These three words have taken on new meaning for us all since the Spring issue of the Star of the North was released on May 17, 2020. George Floyd was tragically killed at dusk on Memorial Day in South Minneapolis by a white police officer. The horrific video of this event sparked nationwide riots and our lives are forever changed.

The Star of the North editorial team unanimously decided last Summer to follow the lead of the ACDA-MN board of directors and focus our three upcoming issues on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. So we begin with Diversity and continuously reflect on the question – is everyone in their rich and infinite variety invited?

Here is a short introduction video about the Fall 2020 issue:



Our Voices from the District articles are authored by Amy Johnson and Dwight Jilek. Each author approaches our theme from a unique perspective. The Commissioning Corner article features short interviews with seven of our beloved compositional voices in the state as they discuss how their thoughts on the topic have evolved over time and also how diversity impacts their work as a composer. We also feature an extended video interview with Roland M. Carter as he discusses his arrangement of the Black National Anthem – “Lift Every Voice and Sing.” Dr. Carter gives us a first hand account of how he constructed his arrangement 50 years ago.

The Legacy article, authored by Sarah Ablesen, offers our readers a beautiful tribute to Nancy Grundahl. The Pine City High School Choir Program, under the direction of Jennifer Krinke, is our Star Program for this issue. Charlie Moe is featured in our first Home Sweet Home article that discusses the unique challenges and opportunities of going back to teach in one’s alma mater. The Inside ACDA article, FMC Endowment Fund, Scholarship Sketches, ACE Inspirations, and Pick Six articles are all here to give you current and valuable resources.

On behalf of the Star of the North editorial team, we thank you for your readership, and for embracing the challenge of making sure that everyone is invited.


Peter J. Durow
Managing Editor

Miriam Augsburger
Associate Editor

Erik Doucette
Associate Editor

Garrett Lathe
Associate Editor

Cory Westgard
Associate Editor

Bruce W. Becker
Executive Director

Dariush Akhavan
Web Editor


Cover Photo by Aaron Burden from StockSnap