Westmont Magazine A Well-Orchestrated Life
Carleda Hutton ’54 got a job teaching music at Brethren Christian High School in Long Beach, Calif., a few months after graduating from Westmont. She never left. After 50 years of faithful service, she retired in June. In honor of her commitment to Christian education, Westmont has given her a Distinguished Service Award.
“It is very special, very meaningful, teaching music,” she says. “I have had the opportunity to mold lives and challenge students to live by Christian principles.”
Over the years, Carleda led choirs for junior and senior high school, directed a variety of ensembles, put together countless special programs and influenced the lives of thousands of students.
In 1972, she helped establish Musicale, an annual choral festival that attracts up to 20 choirs from around the state. For 30 years, she chaired this impressive and intensive two-day event for the Association of Christian Schools International.
Named Western Association of Christian Schools Teacher of the Year, she has served as guest conductor for choirs and special events in Southern California. The Christian Association of Senior Adults honored her with the Heritage of Faithfulness award.
Carleda majored in music at Westmont, earned a master’s degree at CSU Long Beach, and did graduate work at the University of Southern California, UC Los Angeles, and Occidental College.
“The staff and the school families became my family,” she says. “It’s been an incredible experience.”