IUSD Arts Educators Honored by Orange County Music and Arts Administrators

Congratulations are in order for IUSD arts educators and administrators for their commitment to excellence in arts education.

Eight of the 14 Orange County arts educators, recognized by the Orange County Music and Arts Administrators (OCMAA), were IUSD teachers and administrators.  Sponsored by OCMAA, the Segerstrom Center for the Arts and the Orange County Department of Education, the OCMAA awards program annually spotlights exemplary teachers and administrators who oversee instrumental, vocal, theater, dance and visual arts programs at schools throughout the county.

Congratulations to the following IUSD Educators:  

Bob Avzaradel – Irvine High School Music Teacher – Secondary Instrumental Music Award

Ranae Bettger – University High School Drama Teacher – Secondary Theater

Amy Comestro – Elementary Music Teachers (grades K-3) – Elementary Vocal Music Award

Bob Curley – Beacon Park K-8 School Principal – Art Administrator Award

Linda Curtis – Elementary Strings Music Teacher (grades 4-6) – Elementary Music Award

Emily Marton – Elementary Art Teacher (grades K-6) – Teacher Elementary Visual Art Award

Brendan McBrien – Rancho San Joaquin Middle School Music Teacher – Secondary Instrumental Music Award

Rebeccah Phillips – Irvine High School Visual Arts Teacher – Digital and Media Arts Award

Catherine Titus – Portola Springs Elementary School Education Specialist - The Phyllis Berenbeim Arts in Special Education Award

Brad Van Patten – Director of Arts Education – Arts Administrator Award

IUSD’s Assistant Superintendent of Education Services Cassie Parham, recognized the District’s honorees during her comments and presented IUSD Director of Arts Education Brad Van Patten, with his Arts Administrator Award.


Parham praised Van Patten for building upon IUSD’s long-running commitment to arts education, which spans five decades. 

“The scope and shape of the arts programs in IUSD are a testament to Brad Van Patten’s talent and vision,” said Parham. “Brad believes the arts should be inclusive and he has always understood that arts can change the course of students’ lives.  His leadership has helped paved the way for numerous GRAMMY Foundation awards and other important honors, including recognition from the NAMM Foundation as a Best Community for Music Education for 10 consecutive years.  We are profoundly grateful for his leadership.”

For more information about IUSD’s commitment to the arts, visit https://bit.ly/3LsL3RV.  

Visit https://bit.ly/3yFAhF8 to read the more about IUSD’s OCMAA nominees and honorees.