Archived AIM Teacher of the Year Awards


CAROLINE JENNINGS received her master and bachelor degrees in piano performance from the University of Utah. Ms. Jennings became a Permanent Professional National Certified Teacher of Music in 2020. She has enjoyed serving in UMTA as the president of the St. George chapter, a member of the State AIM Board, and as local AIM chapter chairman. Caroline maintains an active private studio and is a part time professor at Dixie State University.


SHARALYN HEATH, NCTM, has 39 years of teaching experience. Her students have participated in AIM for the past 23 years. Many of her students have been awarded FAIM scholarships and received Level 10 Awards. Her students have performed with local symphonies, won numerous competitions, received college music scholarships, and become independent music teachers.

Sharalyn served the past six years as the Provo-Orem AIM Chairperson, and 10 years as the FAIM Chairperson for the South-Central Region. She is also the acting region chair for UMTA performance evaluations, and is a past president of the Nebo chapter. She has given presentations throughout the state on topics including terrific technique, developing aural awareness, surveying methods, and Kindermusik.

She is a symphony pianist with the Utah Valley Symphony and plays the celeste with The Utah Metropolitan Ballet Orchestra. She founded the Mountain Peaks Players chamber ensemble and performed multiple recitals in the Springville Arts Commission Concert Series. She is an active accompanist and music judge. She has been a soloist with the Utah Valley Symphony, San Diego Regional Orchestra, Utah Valley Civic Orchestra, Mormon Youth Symphony, and the Utah Valley Youth Symphony. Heath graduated magna cum laude in Piano Performance from BYU where she studied with Irene Peery-Fox and Robert B. Smith.

In addition to her training as a pianist, she has been a member of the women’s vocal ensemble Cantus, and a percussionist with the Utah Valley Symphony, Mormon Youth Symphony, BYU Percussion Ensemble, and Panoramic Steel Band. A mother of five and grandmother of two, Sharalyn lives in Orem with her husband John.


LORNA KUJANPAA, NCTM, has been a member of the Timpanogos Chapter of UMTA for 15 years. She has served as Chapter President twice as well as AIM Chairman for 4 years. Lorna became a Nationally Certified Teacher in 2012, a goal she was excited to complete! She studied piano under Mona Smith and earned her Associates Degree in Piano Pedagogy from BYU Provo. Lorna has taught for 35 years and says that UMTA is the best thing that ever happened to her teaching! She especially loves the AIM program and firmly believes that students who participate in AIM become well rounded musicians, ready to use their skills to enjoy music and serve for a lifetime. Lorna maintains her studio in Highland, UT and has been thrilled to help 5 students complete level 10 AIM in the last 3 years. She has also loved her role as accompanist for the Highland Children’s Choir for the last 11 years, and plans on continuing for many more. Outside of teaching, she frequently accompanies church choirs and ensembles, and enjoys sewing, camping, walking and family gatherings. Lorna and her husband, Paul, are the parents of 6 sons and 1 daughter, and the grandparents of 8 grandchildren.


SUANN ADAMS does not remember ever learning to play the piano. By the time she began formal lessons, she was already playing fairly difficult repertoire. Maggie Gammel accepted Suann as a piano student when she was 9 years old. She has studied with with John C. Weis, Mary Rae Johnson, Reid Nibley, N. Jane Tan, Paul Pollei, and Seymour Bernstein.

Suann accompanied many choirs and musicals, played horn in many symphonies, and won top honors in various festivals on both piano and horn while going through school. She was the first runner up in music at the State Sterling Scholar competition for Utah in 1981.

Suann studied music, organ, and horn at BYU for five and one-half years, majoring in composition, she won an ASCAP award for composition. She was featured soloist on horn with the BYU concert band and toured with many different orchestras, including a trip with one of the first American groups to be allowed into China, the BYU Chamber Orchestra.

Suann runs a very successful music studio where she offers training in piano, french horn, organ, voice, pedagogy, composition, and music theory. She is one of the top five piano team specialists in the country, having received her training from N. Jane Tan.

Suann performs in the New American Philharmonic Orchestra, played in the pit orchestra for the Utah Musical Theatre for 10 years or more, and is a founding member of the Rocky Mountain Piano Team. She founded the annual Utah Piano Team Festival and has been AIM chair for the Ogden Chapter of the UMTA.