Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients

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George Staiduhar

George has been a polka band leader and accordionist for 50 years. He is also the composer of the 2001 Greatest All-Time Hit Song, Mozart's Polka.

George was voted the Musician of the Year by the National Cleveland style Polka Hall of Fame in 1991, 1994, and 2000. The George Staiduhar Band was voted the 2003 Band of the Year.

In the early 1970s George's band led tours to Slovenia, and recorded the album Polkas on the Slopes and Polka Swingin' with Staiduhar.

George Staiduhar and the Revue has played at the Illinois Polka Festival in Oakbrook for ten years. Other out-of-town playing engagements include Springvale Ballroom, Melody Grove Ballroom, SNPJ Campsite, and Painesville Township, where the band was voted "Most Popular Band."

George continued playing as lead accordionist with the Harry Faint Revue, recording "Polkas by George", which was nominated for a Grammy in 1990, and was voted the Recording of the Year in 1991 by the Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame. He played with the band on Walter Ostanek's 1998 Grammy-nominated album "Putting it All Together". George also recorded the albums Cadillac Polkas, The Best of the Harry Faint Revue, and in 1999 released the album "Y2K Polkas".

George has written more than 100 polkas and waltzes.

George served as a trustee of the Polka Hall of Fame from 1992 to 2004, and is currently the chairman of the Polka Hall of Fame beer stand at the E. 185th Street festival, and ticket chairman for the Polka Hall of Fame Awards Show and Meet the Winners Dance.

He is considered one of the leading accordionists in the polka field because of his dexterity in fingering, and classical training in accordion.

George is a federal court recorder for the U.S. District Court in Cleveland, Ohio. His wife is Sharon. He has two children Scott and Tracy. He lives in Wickliffe, Ohio. He is a member of SNPJ Lodge 614 and Croatian Fraternal Union #99.

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