Fergus Falls native and Minnesota State Community and Technical College graduate Laura Odden was recently honored as the state’s Outstanding Young Choral Director by the American Choral Directors Association of Minnesota.
Odden is currently director of choirs for grades 7-12 in the Milaca public schools. Since she joined the central Minnesota school district in 2008, the number of students participating in middle and high school choirs has nearly doubled. She also advocated the creation of a choir for 6th graders, which was formed in 2014 with nearly every 6th grader opting to join.
Her responsibilities include voice lessons, two high school choirs, two junior high choirs and an extracurricular choir, and Odden also serves as student council advisor and participates in the school district’s Bully Prevention program.
Odden was nominated for the award by M State Director of Choirs Teresa Ashworth, who introduced her at the ACDA annual awards luncheon in November. A 2004 graduate of M State, she earned her bachelor’s degree in vocal and classroom music from Minnesota State University Moorhead and in 2013 completed her master’s degree in vocal music education at North Dakota State University.