Brett Eldredge and the CMA Foundation helped to honor 50 music teachers in the Nashville, Tenn., district Tuesday night (April 26) at Nashville's City Winery.

According to a press release, for the first time, 50 music teachers from one district were recognized for "their dedication to their students, commitment to teaching, and their undeniable role in enriching the community and their individual schools."

The inaugural CMA Music Teacher of Excellence honors were hosted by Eldredge. Each Teacher of Excellence recognized throughout the evening was awarded with a $2,000 grant from the CMA Foundation.

“Purchasing instruments has been central to the mission of the Foundation, but rewarding teachers provides the motivation and encouragement necessary to have a dynamic, sustainable music program in Nashville and other cities,” says Joe Galante, Chairman of the CMA Foundation Board of Directors, in a press release.

Eldredge’s own childhood music teacher, Judy Carroll, was his guest for the evening. Carroll taught voice and choral programs at elementary and middle schools in Paris, Ill., for 27 years.

"Everyone needs somebody to help guide you along. Someone that sees the talent in you, that believes,” Edredge explains. "There are so many schools that don’t have music programs and that is why I’m so passionate about this, because some kids may not have their Judy Carroll, or their mentor, or the person that helps them along. Kids should never be without the option to have music in their lives."

The CMA Foundation has donated $10 million to music education programs throughout Nashville over the past 10 years. Tuesday night's 50 recipients were decided through an application process that included testimonials from students’ parents and the principals at each school. An anonymous panel of music education professionals then decided on the selection of the 50 teachers honored.

“To have those outlets to pursue my music at that age in my life, changed my life,” Eldredge previously told the Tennessean. "Maybe it’s the stuff that shaped me into winning CMA Awards and having big hit songs. Every step matters, especially when you’re young and laying the foundation of who you are and what you’re going to love for the rest of your life."

See Pics From Brett's Tour With Thomas Rhett