Boardman, Eunice (1926-2009) | University of Illinois Archives

Name: Boardman, Eunice (1926-2009)
Variant Name: Meske, Eunice Boardman
Fuller Form: Boardman, Eunice Louise

Historical Note:

Eunice Boardman (b. January 27, 1926, Cordova, Ill., d. May 5, 2009, Bettendorf, Iowa) was a music educator and author, specializing in elementary music education. She received her bachelor's degree from Cornell College in 1947 and in the summer of 1948 entered Teachers College at Columbia University to begin her graduate studies in music education. Boardman's first teaching position was in Postville, Iowa, a position she held between 1947 and 1949. Her subsequent public school teaching positions were held at Makoquetta, Iowa (1949-51) and Clinton, Iowa (1951-52).

After completing her master's degree in 1951, she went on to teach elementary music in Grinnell, Iowa (1952-56) and in 1956 was hired to teach elementary school methods at Northern Illinois University. In 1957 she accepted a faculty appointment at the University of Wichita (later renamed Wichita State University in 1964) where she led classes on music instructional methods and supervised student-teachers. In the summer of 1960 Boardman began her doctoral studies at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, but continued teaching at Wichita.

While completing her doctoral studies, Boardman and her faculty advistor, Bjornar Bergethon, co-authored the textbook, Musical Growth in the Elementary School, published in 1963, and with Bergethon and Charles Leonahrd as advisors she completed her Ph.D. in 1964.

Boardman remained at Wichita State University until 1972. In 1972, she married Del Meske and used the name Eunice Boardman Meske in her publications until 1989 when she returned to her maiden name. From 1972 to 1975 she taught part-time as a faculty member at Illinois State University and Roosevelt University. In 1975, she was hired for a full-time position at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and later became director of the university's music department in 1980. She left the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1988 to accept a full-time faculty appointment in the School of Music at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.Ã?  She also served as chair of the Graduate Committee for Music Education in the School of Music. In 1998 she retired.

Boardman was a prolific author throughout her professional career. She authored numerous textbooks, including Exploring Music (1966), The Music Book (1980), and Holt Music (1987). She was also an active member of several professional music organizations including the Wisconsin Music Educators Association (WMEA) and the Music Educators National Conference (MENC). She was inducted her into MENC's Music Educators Hall of Fame in 2004.


Baker, Katherine Marie. (1992). Significant Experiences, Influences and Relationships in the Educational and Professional Development of Three Music Educators: Gretchen Hieronymus Beall, Eunice Louise Boardman, and Mary Henderson Palmer. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Illinois.

Fehr, Roz. (2009, October 7). "In Memoriam: MENC Acknowledges Recent Member Deaths." MENC. Retrieved June 23, 2010, from

Shifflet, Brian. (2007). A History of Ten Influential Women in Music Education, 1885-1997. Master?s Thesis. Retrieved June 23, 2010, from

WSJ Death Notices. (2009, May 9). Wisconsin State Journal. Retrieved June 23, 2010, from

Note Author: Andrew Boettcher and Shannon Lausch

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