Matt Betton was founding executive director of the National Association for Jazz Educators (NAJE), establishing its reputation as the primary voice and leading authority for jazz education worldwide, growing it upwards of 8,000 members in 42 countries prior to its being renamed the International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE), with himself named as executive-director emeritus. Today the original voices and mantle for jazz education (NAJE and IAJE) are carried forward by Jazz Education Network (JEN).
Betton, also co-founder and director of the Stan Kenton National Stage Band Camps, received an honorary doctorate from Boston’s Berklee College of Music, the Kansas State University Alumni Medallion Award, the IAJE Humanitarian Award, and membership into the Hall of Fame for the Kansas Music Educators Association. “His contributions to the field of jazz education are incalculable.” – David Baker, Indiana University Distinguished Professor of Music.
Betton is also known for his Clarinet Quintets and Saxophone Choir music that was composed for high schools and summer music camps.