The Colburn-Pledge Music Scholarship Foundation, a 501(c)(3) private nonprofit corporation, was founded in San Antonio, Texas, in 1985 by John Pledge with proceeds from the estates of his sister, Genevieve Pledge, and of Lois Colburn, both former members of the San Antonio Symphony, for the purpose of offering tuition aid to string players residing in Texas who are preparing for careers in classical music. The original officers of the foundation were Shirley Frederic, president; Robert Danielson, William Moore, and Barbara Faught, vice-presidents; Joycelyn Rudeloff, secretary; and John Pledge, treasurer.

The first annual Colburn-Pledge Music Scholarship auditions were held in San Antonio on June 2, 1986. As of 2020, 125 scholarships totaling more than $95,000 had been awarded by the foundation to 67 different students. Click here to see a year-by-year list of scholarship recipients.