The Donald W. Wood Sr. Vocal Competition (Wood Competition) is a collaboration between the New Orleans Opera Association, Loyola University New Orleans College of Music and Fine Arts, Tulane University Department of Music, and New Orleans Center for Creative Arts. Beginning in 2015, the contest is open to all Louisiana high school sophomores, juniors, and seniors. The Wood Competition promotes artistic excellence, provides financial support to young vocalists, and encourages young local singers in vocal music.
Created by board member Debby Hirsch Wood in honor of her late husband Donald W. Wood Sr., the Wood family has granted funding for the competition to continue in perpetuity in his name. Donald Wood Sr. loved opera and was supportive of NOOA’s educational endeavors. Wood’s six children continue their father’s legacy of supporting the arts in Louisiana. They are Sarah Louise Wood Ham (Scott Ham), Donald William Wood Jr. (Maria Ainsworth Newell Wood), Pearce Friedrichs Wood (Babs Evangelista), Tiffany Shea Hayers (Stuart Hayers), Hunter Whitefield Shea (Christy Liriano Shea), and Emily Madison Eickhoff.