News Bulletins
News Bulletins

August 30, 1999
Gordon Young Bequeaths $500,000 to AGO

NEW YORK CITY The AMERICAN GUILD OF ORGANISTS (AGO) is pleased to announce a generous bequest from the estate of GORDON YOUNG. The attorneys for Gordon Young's estate have notified the AGO that the Guild is to be the recipient of a bequest in the amount of $500,000 the largest single gift ever to be received in the AGO's 103-year history.

Gordon Young, one of the Guild's great friends and long-time members, passed away at his home in St. Clair Shores, Michigan, in October of 1998 at the age of 78. Mr. Young was a prolific composer of nearly 1,000 compositions for organ, chamber ensemble, symphony orchestra, and solo voice, including the Prelude in Classic Style for organ. "The music of Gordon Young, both choral and organ, is performed regularly in churches all across our nation. His music is appreciated by musicians and listeners alike." remarked Philip Hahn, President of the AGO, in his address to the AGO regional conventions this summer. President Hahn continued, "We are grateful for Gordon Young's magnanimous inclusion of the American Guild of Organists in his will. We are thankful for his life which overflowed with joy joy for music, joy in music." The AGO National Council will determine ways to place this bequest so that it will, in perpetuity, enable the continuation of Gordon Young's love for the glory of music.

Born in Kansas, the son of a minister, Gordon Young received his Bachelor of Music degree from Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas, and later received an honorary doctorate there for his contributions to church music. During the course of his career, he was a radio organist in Tulsa, a music critic and columnist for daily newspapers in Oklahoma and Pennsylvania, and choirmaster in churches in Philadelphia and Kansas City. Since coming to Michigan in 1952, Mr. Young taught organ in conjunction with Wayne State University and for 15 years was organist and choir director at the First Presbyterian Church in Detroit.