Scholarship Page

RAMI Scholarships

Madeline Herdeman

2005 Gary S. Wilmer / RAMI Music Scholarship

Madeline is a founding member, cellist, singer, and songwriter of the Houston-based chamber rock band Mystery Loves Company. MLC has released 4 studio albums and several live albums, singles, and EPs, and they have toured nationally. They were selected as showcase performers for the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Conference in Anaheim, CA in 2019, the Super Bowl Host Committee performances in Houston, TX in 2017, and the Cutting Edge Music Conference in New Orleans, LA in 2016, and are official performers of the Harmony in the Air music program of the Houston Airport System. 

Madeline was the orchestra director at KIPP SHARP College Prep Fine Arts School for 8 years, and many of her former students have been accepted into the Houston Youth Symphony and the American Festival for the Arts summer program.

Madeline is a cello faculty member of the Superior String Alliance Music Camp  in Michigamme, MI, the music director of Kscholastic Inc. Tutoring Services, and a multi-style private instructor of cello, violin, and viola. 

She performs on an NS electric cello and is an endorsed artist of NS Design.

The Rockford Area Music Industry, Inc. has awarded over $70,000 to over 50 students to support their desire to study music.

The Gary S. WIlmer / RAMI Music Scholarship

The Gary S. Wilmer Memorial Trust was established in 1996 to honor the memory and continue the legacy of Gary Wilmer by awarding scholarships to students who wish to pursue and education in music. Gary was the founder & publisher of RAM Magazine, a Rockford area music monthly, and a founding organizer of the RAMI awards. Joe Guzzardo, owner of Guzzardo Music, said of Gary, "He was thoughtful and sensitive, and thoroughly understood the problems and needs of local music and musicians." Gary could do it all, be it organizing benefits, booking bands, running sound or lights, helping new music club owners or encouraging new talent to persevere. As the president of his senior class at East High School, as a graduate of Rockford College and as a successful businessman, Gary's 43 years of living showed that education is a marvelous "conductor" of a successful musical life.

It is the sincere hope of the RAMI scholarship committee that the recipients of this scholarship will carry on Gary's legacy with pride.

Scholarship Selection Criteria

- Be a college-bound student in Boone, Ogle or Winnebago County;
- Be 19 years old or younger as of the application deadline;
- Be attending or planning to attend an accredited two- or four-year college/university;
- Have a minimum GPA of 2.5/4.0;
- Demonstrate an ongoing commitment to further their musical education throughout college; and
- Be actively involved in school or community musical groups.
- Previous Wilmer scholarship recipients are not eligible to reapply.

Deadline January 1st. For more information and online application forms, visit

RAMI Young Artists Music Scholarship

RAMI funds several programs through The Music Academy in Rockford. Each student is nominated by the staff of the Music Academy and must demonstrate financial need. Scholarship covers one year of study.

PO Box 4128, Rockford, IL 61110
ramicommittee @

Rockford Area Music Industry, Inc. is classified as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization by the standards of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Therefore, any donations to the Rockford Area Music Industry, Inc. may be tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.