Concordia Sweeps TAPPS 6A Fine Arts of the Year Awards for 5th Consecutive Year

At Concordia, it is very important that we offer our students, families, faculty, and staff opportunities to create and experience music, theatre, and art. We believe strongly in providing a comprehensive stage of offerings for our students to develop a love for fine arts.

Over the last decade plus, our Fine Arts programs have flourished, and God has blessed Concordia with students and leaders that have taken these programs to new levels around Texas and the country. Every school year, TAPPS (Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools) distributes several select “Of the Year” awards for fine art and athletic performance and participation.  

We are proud to announce that Concordia swept all three of the TAPPS 6A Fine Arts of the Year Awards for 2023-2024 school year!

  • Jaden Thibodeau ‘24 was named the TAPPS 6A Female Student of the Year.
  • Nate Held ‘25 was named the TAPPS 6A Male Student of the Year.
  • Mrs. Heather Vogel was named the TAPPS 6A Fine Arts Teacher of the Year.

A Decade of Dominance

From the school year of 2015-2016 to this past year of 2023-2024, these awards have been awarded eight (8) times. (In 2019-2020 no awards were given due to COVID.) In the past eight award seasons, Concordia has swept all three Fine Arts awards six times, including the last five seasons! The Crusaders have also been blessed to receive at least one of these three prestigious awards every year dating back to 2012-2013.

Concordia received their first TAPPS Fine Arts of the Year award in 2012-2013. Since then, Concordia has won the Male Student of the Year ten out of eleven times! The Crusaders have also won the Female Student of the Year eight times and the Teacher of the Year seven times. A full list of those honorees is pictured on the side.

Award Recipient Resumes

Jaden Thibodeau ‘24 excelled in Symphonic Band, Jazz Band, Academics, Speech & Debate, and the Art Team and for her year-long efforts, she was selected as the TAPPS 6A Fine Arts Female Student of the Year. 


In TAPPS competitions this year, Jaden earned the following:

  • State Champion in Instrumental Music playing Violin and was the Strings section leader
  • Symphonic Band – “1” rating & sweepstakes award
  • Jazz Band – “1” rating
  • 4th Place at the Field Band Competition
  • State Champion in Art
  • Individual State Champion at State Art Competition in Short Film Documentary
  • Individual State Runner-Up in Black & White Photography, 6th place in On-Site Drawing, and 7th Place in Color Photography at the TAPPS 6A State Art Competition.
  • State Champion in Speech & Debate
  • Individual State Runner-Up in both Duet Acting and Original Oratory at the State Speech & Debate competition. Additionally, Thibodeau earned 6th place in Persuasive Speaking and 9th place in Debate.
  • State Runner-Up in Academic, Speech, and Debate
  • 8th place finish in the Academic category of Current Events at the TAPPS 6A State Academics, Speech, and Debate competition. Also participated in the Literary Criticism and Ready Writing events.
  • Thibodeau also was a varsity athlete in multiple sports (Cross Country and Track & Field) for Concordia! The Girls Cross Country team finished in 8th place as a team at the State Meet in October 2023. Then, at the State Track & Field Championships in May 2024, Thibodeau competed in the Pole Vault and finished T-6th in State helping the Lady Crusaders finish in 7th place overall.

Comments from Coaches/Teachers:

  • “Jaden never backs down from a challenge and truly enjoys the learning process. She deserves to be recognized. Her accolades are a testament to her dedication, positive spirit, and disciplined work ethic. Jaden is faithful, fearless, and fabulous.” – Mrs. Waddell, Speech & Debate Coach
  • “Jaden is a joy! Always positive, always working, always helping others, always striving to do her best. She is very mature and she takes on challenges with a smile, and has always been warm and kind to both students and teachers.” – Mrs. Payne, Academic Team Coach
  • “Jaden embodies a huge amount of compassion and kindness to everyone around her. The world is a better place with her in it!” – Mrs. Vogel, Art Team Coach


Nate Held ’25 excelled in Symphonic Band, Jazz Band, Field Band, Drumline, Concert Choir, Chamber Choir, and Esports and for his efforts, he was selected as the TAPPS 6A Fine Arts Male Student of the Year. 

In TAPPS competitions this year, Nate earned the following:

  • State Champion in Instrumental Music playing Trombone and was the Low Brass section leader
  • Symphonic Band – “1” rating & sweepstakes award
  • Jazz Band – “1” rating & featured soloist
  • Trombone solo – “1” rating & All-State Honors award
  • Brass Ensemble – “2” rating
  • 4th Place at the Field Band Competition
  • State Champion in Vocal Music as a Bass and was the Bass 2 section leader
  • Concert Choir – “1” rating & sweepstakes award
  • Men’s Chorus – “1” rating & sweepstakes award
  • Chamber Choir – “1” rating
  • Vocal solo – “2” rating
  • Esports – State Champion and team captain for Concordia’s League of Legends team, which secured Concordia’s first Esports team game state title in school history
  • Concordia’s winter musical, Disney’s “The Little Mermaid,” was not a TAPPS event, but Held showed his musical prowess by playing Keys for the pit orchestra for the live musical shows. 

Comments from Teachers/Coaches:

  • “Nate’s confidence, musical knowledge, humility, and kindness have propelled him in just two short years to be one of the top singers at Concordia. He daily gives nothing less than his best, and his TAPPS achievements are proof of his dedication, talent, and hard work. It’s a blessing to have Nate in choir and I’m looking forward to having one more year with him!” – Mr. Palomaki, Choir Director
  • “Getting to share what you love to do with your son and watch him do it at a high level is very special. It’s not just what he’s done, but the how is what matters. How we treats those around him, and how he comes to work every day while living out his faith.” – Mr. Held, Band Director
  • “Nate is truly an ideal team captain and an invaluable leader in our Esports program. His infectious excitement inspires and motivates his teammates to improve and excel, and his reliability and communication skills make navigating the complex and often chaotic world of Esports (and League of Legends specifically), much easier for both his teammates and coaches.” – Ms. Lindquist, Esports Coach


Mrs. Heather Vogel, Art Department Chair and upper-level art teacher, was selected as the TAPPS 6A Fine Arts Teacher of the Year.  This year, under the creative leadership of Mrs. Vogel, Concordia’s Art team claimed the first State Championship Banner in school history!

The State Art competition included 20 different categories of visual art, photography, digital art, physical art, multimedia, and art history. Concordia had at least one member of the Art team place in 16 of the 20 different categories. (Each school was limited to a maximum of x3 submissions per category for a maximum number of 60 entries per school. In 2024, Concordia had 40 entries across 17 of the 20 categories.) 

The Crusaders wowed the judges with 32 of their 40 entries placing in the top 8, earning valuable points for the team. The Crusaders’ 199 points was 41 points higher than their score in 2023 and was enough to clinch the title. Concordia finished 1st in eight categories and 2nd in six categories, tallying 128 total points with those 14 finishes. 


Another way in which Concordia’s fine arts programs have gained notoriety is through the TAPPS State Competitions each year. TAPPS awards the Henderson Cup each school year for school’s state competition results in athletics, fine arts, and academics.

In the 2023-2024 Henderson Cup, 18 schools competed in the 6A division. This year, Concordia finished 4th Overall with 83 points (up from 9th last year with only 61 points), but the 48 Fine Arts points was the most Fine Arts points out of any school across all six divisions of TAPPS, resulting in CLHS being named State Champions for Overall Fine Arts. Concordia has earned this honor for the 3rd time in the last 5 years (2023 and 2019). Antonian College Prep (San Antonio, TX) claimed the 2023-2024 Henderson Cup with a total of 109 total points for this school year with 82 points from Athletics and 27 points from Fine Arts.


This year specifically, our Fine Arts teams did well across the eight different competitions, earning points in six:

  • In Vocal Music, our choir won the TAPPS 6A State Championship for the fourth consecutive school year and their 8th title in last decade (10 pts).
  • In Instrumental Music, the Symphonic Band, Drumline, Field Band, Handbells, and Jazz Band ensembles combined to also win the TAPPS 6A State Championship for the third year in a row and their 5th title in the last decade (10 pts).
  • The Art team earned their highest finish in school history as State Champion after finishing as State Runner-Up last year and 3rd place from 2016-2022 (10 pts).
  • The Cheer team represented well at the State Championships with a State Runner-Up finish in the Spirit Division competition (8 pts).
  • The Academic/Speech/Debate team finished 2nd overall at the combined competition thanks to the Speech and Debate team’s State Title (8 pts).
  • Finally, our One Act Play competitive theatre team claimed 5th place at the State competition with their performance of “Little Women” (2 pts).


In 2023-2024, Concordia was the highest scoring TAPPS Fine Arts school in the Houston Metro for the 8th consecutive year across all six divisions of TAPPS with 48 points toward the Henderson Cup. This year’s total was the highest we have ever earned in a school year in our history and was 12 points higher than the previous two school years’ total of 36 Fine Arts points.

Points were awarded for state competition results in Academics, Instrumental Music (Band, Drumline, Handbells, Jazz Band), Cheer, Vocal Music, Dance, Orchestra, and One Act Play.

Concordia does not compete in Dance or Orchestra making their finish among Houston private schools quite impressive considering they recorded points in six out of the eight fine art competitions.

Concordia’s 48 Fine Arts points totaled more than The Woodlands Christian Academy, Northland Christian, Frassati Catholic, Legacy Prep, Providence Christian, Second Baptist, and the British International School’s combined total of 34 points.


One of the benefits about sending your student to Concordia is the opportunity to be involved in many different activities including athletics, ag sciences, clubs/organizations, AND fine arts. Concordia has an expansive list of Fine Art opportunities for students to participate in, and we strive for excellence in everything we do. Over the last decade, several schools around the nation have had to cut fine art programs due to lack of funding.

At Concordia, we value our fine arts and are very thankful for the support given to these students and faculty. Thank you, Crusaders, for blessing others with your God-given gifts and talents! We are looking forward to another great year in 2024-2025 with a full list of fine art concerts and productions.

To learn more about Fine Arts at Concordia, or any of our extra-curricular activities, visit

Sing a new song unto the Lord! God blesses people with a unique ability – to create!