NASHVILLE, Tenn. (April 24th, 2023) – The 2nd Annual SGMA of West Virginia Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Concert took place on April 22nd, 2023, at Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church in Elkview, West Virginia. Dean Hickman, founder of The Guardians Quartet, was among the 8 inducted into the Hall of Fame at the ceremony.

With his tremendous impact and influence on the entire Southern Gospel community, Hickman is more than deserving of this honor. Dean began his career in Southern Gospel music at just 19 years old with The Golden Keys Quartet. In 1988, Hickman founded The Guardians Quartet, now one of the preeminent artists in the Southern Gospel genre with several #1 songs and accolades to their credit. Hickman also contributes greatly in industry leadership serving on the boards of the Southern Gospel Music Association and Sea Walker Media Corporation, among others. He is supporter and encourager of other Southern Gospel artists and has made an immense impact on the Gospel community.

Dean Hickman commented on his induction, “I am extremely proud of my heritage, growing up in the great state of West Virginia. I was part of a great family who loved God and were blessed beyond measure. However, little did I know the blessings that God would bestow upon me throughout my adult life. One of these blessings is when I recently learned that I was being inducted in the West Virginia Southern Gospel Music Hall of Fame. This is an unbelievable honor that I cherish from the bottom of my heart. Southern Gospel music has influenced my life since I was a teenager, and I am so thankful to the West Virginia Southern Gospel Music Board for this tremendous honor.”

Dean Hickman has a long history in Southern Gospel music beginning as a 19-year- old with The Golden Keys Quartet. In 1988, he embarked on his current journey as tenor with The Guardians. Dean is a natural encourager, handles the business end of things, and, most importantly, has a genuine heart for the ministry of the Guardians. There is no bigger morale-booster to The Guardians and also to the entire community of Southern Gospel singers than Dean Hickman. He loves this genre of music, and it shows every time he walks on stage.