Dr. Frances Irwin is a freelance musician in the St. Louis area. She retired after 31 years of teaching public school music. Fran has a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, where she was a member of the Duquesne University Tamburitzans, performing concerts of Balkan music in the U.S. and Europe. She earned both her master's and Doctorate of Music Education degrees from Washington University in St. Louis. In addition to writing articles on multicultural music education, Dr. Irwin has given presentations on Balkan music at the local, state, and international levels. She has written "A History of Tamburitza Music in the St. Louis Area" (1991) and her collection "Balkan Melodies for the Accordion" was published in 1995 by Mel Bay Publications, Inc. In 1991 she became a Nationally Certified Music Educator at the Music Educators National Conference and in 1997 she was given an Emerson Electric Excellence in Teaching Award. She is listed in various volumes of biographical references including the "Who's Who in American Education", Who's Who in America", and "Who's Who of American Women". In 2003 Dr. Irwin was elected International President of the Mu Phi Epsilon International Music Fraternity. She also serves on the Metro South Arts Council where her chief task is to oversee their annual Scott Joplin Ragtime Competition. She and her husband Harry sing in the St. Louis Cathedral Basilica Choir. They are the parents of five grown children.