The South Jersey Choral Directors' Association has a proud history of serving students and music educators of Region III South Jersey since 1958.  The founding members of the Association were:

  • Florian Douglas (Clearview High School)

  • Nelson Muschek (Audubon High School)

  • Jane M. Stetler (Merchantville Schools)

  • Edgard C. Thomas, Jr. (Hightstown Schools)

  • Edgard L. Wallace (Collingswood High School)

In addition, these founders enjoyed the support and cooperation of many of their colleagues in Southern New Jersey who saw the clear need for an organization of this caliber.  The Founders Scholarship honors those members who first envisioned the establishment of this organization and all who have served the Association since it was founded in 1958.

SJCDA was originally cooperatively affiliated with the South Jersey Bandmasters' Association, performing combined concerts of orchestral and choral music.  The first concert occurred on January 24, 1959 at Lakewood High School, with John Jaquish conducting the orchestra and Edgar Wallace leading the chorus (accompanied by Lowell Ayers from Vineland).  The first program was as follows:

  • Orchestra

  • Star Spangled Banner

  • Overture to Oberon

  • Ebb Tide

  • First Suite from Carmen

  • Chorus

  • O Rejoice Ye Christians Loudly

  • O Sacred Head

  • Hodie' Christus Natus Est

  • Duet

  • The Swan

  • Orchestra

  • Entrance of the Boyards

  • Danny Boy

  • Selections from My Fair Lady

  • Chorus

  • Black is the Color of My True Love's Hair

  • I Hear A Voice A-Prayin'

  • He's Gone Away

  • Victory Tide

  • Chorus & Orchestra

  • A Mighty Fortress Is Our God

The orchestra and choral directors later chose to separate the performances and orchestral music came under the supervision of this new organization, now recognized as the South Jersey Band & Orchestra Directors Association (SJBODA).