"When the ASBDA was founded by Dale C. Harris and the other charter members who attended the organizing convention in November of 1953, the intent was to draw together some of the finest minds and best teachers nationally for the purpose of helping influence the direction and furthering the cause of good music in the nation's public schools. Therefore it was decided that prospective members must have taught at least seven years and their work was to be in every way exemplary. Furthermore, a candidate must be endorsed by the state in which he/she resides and in addition receive the overall endorsement of the association itself. In this way the collective thinking of the organization would have the common denominator of successful achievement.
ASBDA membership is recognition of a band director’s work as a music educator by other music educators and is therefore an honor reserved for the nation's greatest bandmasters."