Founder/CEO of Music Health Alliance
Tatum Allsep is the Founder/CEO of Music Health Alliance, a non-profit organization that removes barriers and finds healthcare solutions to “Heal The Music.” Through MHA, Allsep initiated a new model of healthcare support whose outcomes have positively impacted the lives of MHA’s clients and garnered national accolades & recognition. To date, MHA has served over 11,000 music industry professionals in their most vulnerable time of need, saving $50 million in healthcare costs. Prior to founding MHA, Allsep served six years with MCA Records and several years as an artist manager. She also helped launch the first-ever Vanderbilt University Medical Center/ Children’s Hospital Music Industry Relations Department, where she pioneered a number of impactful programs that are still going strong.
Allsep has received a number of accolades for her important work, most recently being named one of Billboard’s Top 100 Power Players. She has served on a number of Boards including Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College Alumni Board, and the Advisory Boards of Country Cares for St. Jude Kids & Musicians on Call, among others. Allsep is a graduate of Leadership Music, and a member of the NARAS, CMA, ACM, SOURCE, GMA, AMA and the National Association of Healthcare Advocates.
Director, Everyday Rebellion Entertainment
President, Women in Music
Nicole Barsalona is director of Everyday Rebellion Entertainment/525 Entertainment Group, an artist management and consulting firm. In this role, she specializes in international market development for clients including Prateek Kuhad (New Delhi) and Mark Wilkinson (Sydney). Barsalona has been a featured speaker at Grammy Pro, SXSW, Berklee College of Music, Northeastern University, Boston University, Mondo.nyc, General Assembly, and G-Rock events, and has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe and Mashable. A passionate advocate, she proudly serves as President for Women In Music and founded the maternal health advocacy organization, Mommy Interrupted.
Barsalona began her career at Steven Van Zandt’s multi-media company Renegade Nation where she served as Chief of Staff, Director of Communications, and Road Manager to Van Zandt on tours with Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band. Highlights of her work include the CBGB Forever campaign, stakeholder development for the Rock and Roll Forever Foundation, Super Bowl XLIII, and international affiliate acquisition for the Underground Garage.
Founder, Omalilly Projects
Co-Founder, Black Music Action Coalition
Binta Niambi Brown is Head of Business Affairs and leads Chance the Rapper’s record label & publishing operation as a member of his management team. On behalf of Chance the Rapper, Brown successfully released three Billboard-charting albums (including two projects that charted in the Top 5) during Summer 2019. Apart from her work at Nice Work and on behalf of Chance the Rapper, she is an independent contractor for Universal Music Group/Verve Records, hired by UMG to executive produce a new project by Tank & the Bangas, and is a strategic producing partner for the new Mandela Musical (and producer of its corresponding concept album and original soundtrack recordings). Brown separately manages GRAMMY Award-winning producer and artist Peter CottonTale and several other emerging artists.
A former corporate lawyer at each of Cravath, Swaine & Moore and Kirkland & Ellis (where she was a partner), Brown has advised global entertainment and media companies such as Dreamworks, Time Warner, Universal, the Washington Post Co., HBO, AOL and IAC. She has robust public policy experience (having advised the White House, a former presidential candidate, and several governors and US senators), and has advised many technology companies including 2U Inc., which IPOed on the Nasdaq in 2014. She holds leadership roles in the SummerStage Music Festival (New York) and the American Theatre Wing, and is a trustee of the American Theatre Wing, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre and Merit School of Music (pending). Brown previously served on the boards of the New York City Parks Foundation, Barnard College, Columbia University, and a board committee of the New York Philharmonic. She is also a trained musician and multi-instrumentalist who has performed internationally and throughout the United States including Carnegie Hall and live music venues throughout New York City. She has been recognized by emPOWER/Financial Times as #8 on its list of the 100 most prominent minority business executives globally, as a Fortune 40 Under 40 Business Leader, the Root’s 100 Most Influential African-Americans, Crain’s New York 40 under 40, JET Magazine 40 under 40, and a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader. She has been featured in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Real Simple Magazine, the Washington Post, the New York Times, on CNN, on the BBC and on NPR. Brown was honored by the US Army and Fifth Division, Iraqi Army for outstanding civilian pro bono support of a military operation that saved an Iraqi youth’s life in 2005. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Co-Founder, Touring Professionals Alliance
Jerome Crooks is a Co-Founder of the Touring Professionals Alliance, established to address the specific needs of touring professionals in response to the shutdown of the live music industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Crooks is a tour manager having worked with dozens of bands over the past 25 years, including Tool, Nine Inch Nails, Soundgarden and the Beastie Boys. He excels in managing the complex needs of his touring clients both domestically and internationally. Crooks began his career working with local Houston promoter Pace Concerts under the tutelage of Louis Messina, Bob Roux, Beckye Levin and Steve Lawler, before joining forces with Kevin Lyman in 1996 for the Warped Tour.
Buyer, Rasputin Music
Black Music Coordinator, Dept. of Record Stores
Saeed Crumpler is a Buyer at Rasputin Music in Berkeley, as well as a musician. Crumpler was recently named Black Music Coordinator for the Dept. of Record Stores, a coalition of independent record stores. In this role, he coordinates outreach to Black-owned record stores, as well as managers and artists, to make sure the infrastructure of indie retail is inclusive and supportive. This new position was born out of discussions resulting from the #TheShowMustBePaused initiative.
Patsy Dolan Bouressa
Executive Director, SIMS Foundation
Patsy Dolan Bouressa is the Executive Director of the SIMS Foundation, a one-of-a-kind non-profit which provides musicians, music industry professionals, and their dependent family members access to mental health and substance use services. SIMS has been at the forefront of making emotional well-being a priority, working to eliminate stigma, educate the public, and arm the music community with the resources needed to look out for themselves and one another. Dolan Bouressa joined the SIMS Foundation in May of 2017 as the Director of Clinical Services and was named Executive Director in December of 2019.
A social work professional for more than 14 years, Dolan Bouressa is a vocal advocate for those dealing with mental health and substance use issues and has served on many committees & working groups dedicated to improving the way in which behavioral healthcare services are delivered. She currently works with the Austin Opioid Workgroup, the Planning Network Advisory Committee, and the Substance Use Disorder Workgroup in addition to partnering with several local non-profits focused on destigmatizing and educating others about mental health and substance use issues.
Co-Founder, Touring Professionals Alliance
Matt Doherty is is a Co-Founder of the Touring Professionals Alliance, established to address the specific needs of touring professionals in response to the shutdown of the live music industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A 36-year industry veteran, Doherty has enjoyed working with marquee touring artists including Tool, Marilyn Manson, The Black Keys, INXS and Damon Albarn. He was also the brains behind the logistical triumph that helped ensure the massive success of The Big Day Out, the world’s largest touring festival. Doherty served as the festival’s production director for 21 years, racking up 118 festivals in this time. All this, coupled with owning and running Australia’s premier staging company from the late 1990s through early 2000s has given Doherty a depth of knowledge hard to match in today’s complicated industry. He wants to be involved with live music education to help young people navigate the professional path he has taken, and is currently working on a book focused on the production side of the business.
SVP of Global Human Resources, Sony/ATV Music
Elicia Felix-Hughey is SVP of Global Human Resources at Sony/ATV Music Publishing, where she is responsible for developing and leading strategic business initiatives for the company’s global HR function. Over the past 18 months with Sony/ATV, she has been laser-focused on enacting positive, sustainable change, and shifting the company’s culture. Her key areas of focus have been diversity in all of its forms, inclusive leadership, equity and the overall development of Sony/ATV employees. This year, Felix-Hughey was named to Billboard’s Power 100 List, as she played an intricate role in doubling the representation of women and people of color at the leadership level. Felix-Hughey has spent more than 20 years in HR at entertainment, music and media companies like The Octave Music Group (parent company of TouchTunes and PlayNetwork), EMI Music Publishing (now part of Sony/ATV Music Publishing), The Harry Fox Agency (HFA), RykoDisc and Palm Pictures. She serves on the Advisory Board of Scholarship Plus, a non-profit organization that provides financial assistance and support to low income NYC students on their journey to and through college.
SVP of Music & Talent, CMT
Leslie Fram is SVP of Music & Talent for Country Music Television (CMT). In this role, she oversees music on all CMT platforms, and negotiates talent for CMT award shows & music specials. In addition, she is responsible for CMT franchises like Next Women Of Country, Equal Play and CMT Tours. She is also co-founder of Change The Conversation, an organization which fights gender inequality in the music industry by providing support, education, and community for female artists and executives. Fram serves on the Board of Directors for the Recording Academy’s Nashville Chapter, the Academy Of Country Music, Save The Music, Nashville Music Equality and the Music Advisory Council for Save The Music.
Co-Founder, Change the Conversation
Tracy Gershon is a co-founder of Change The Conversation, a coalition addressing gender bias within the music industry. The group nurtures a community of female executives and artists, showcases rising female talent, and challenges the current gender disparity in Country music. Gershon is also a founding board member of Nashville Music Equality, a non-profit that encourages racial equality and challenges non-minority colleagues to offer more music industry job opportunities to minorities. Throughout her career, Gershon has dedicated herself to nurturing and developing influential musical talent through key executive positions in A&R, song publishing and artist management. Gershon’s signings include Miranda Lambert to Sony Records, The Mavericks to Sony Publishing and Kacey Musgraves to Warner Chappell Publishing. In June of 2020, Gershon and partner Brandi Carlile launched Northern Light Music, a boutique publishing and artist development joint venture with Universal Music Group. Gershon owns SHERO, an entertainment and consulting company specializing in music publishing, artist development and project management. She also hosts and curates “Y’all Together Now,” an Americana and Country-themed satellite radio show on Sirius XM’s “The Beatles Channel.”
Gershon serves as an active board member for the Recording Academy’s Nashville Chapter, for She is the Music, and for The Actors Bridge; previously, she was a National Trustee for the Recording Academy. She has been presented the Nashville Business Journal’s “Women in Music City” award five consecutive times between 2015 and 2019, and was named one of Nashville Lifestyles’ Top Ten “Women In Business” in 2016.
General Counsel and EVP of Business & Legal Affairs, Universal Music Group
Jeff Harleston is General Counsel and Executive Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs for Universal Music Group. As a key member of the senior executive team, he is responsible for overseeing all business transactions, contracts, and litigation for UMG’s operations worldwide, as well as the company’s government relations, trade and anti-piracy activities. In his 26 years with UMG, he has held a variety of senior executive positions including Executive Vice President/Head of Operations for Geffen Records and SVP of Business & Legal Affairs for MCA Records. This year, Harleston was named chair of UMG’s Task Force for Meaningful Change, which he now co-chairs with Motown Records President/Capitol Music Group EVP Ethiopia Habtemariam. The task force has committed to set long-term goals for charitable donations from the company, supporting internal D&I efforts in UMG’s global offices, creating educational and creative programming focused on racial equality, and pushing for public policy reform, initiatives all backed by a $25 million fund. Harleston has been recognized for his many achievements, including being named Billboard’s 2018 “Lawyer of the Year,” receiving the 2018 Diversity Award from the Association of Corporate Counsel for Southern California, and being named one of Ebony Magazine’s “Power 100” in 2017.
Entertainment Attorney & Owner, LaPolt Law, P.C.
Entertainment attorney Dina LaPolt represents music creators, celebrities, music industry executives, influencers, and owners & controllers of intellectual property. Her firm, LaPolt Law, P.C, is one of the industry’s leading law firms, and the only one of its stature founded and run by a sole female attorney. In addition, she serves as an activist for creators and celebrities in the areas of privacy, copyright, and fairness in radio, often advocating for her clients in legislative matters that affect their rights. In 2015, LaPolt helped found songwriter advocacy group the Songwriters of North America (SONA), and a year later would file a lawsuit on behalf of SONA regarding the Department of Justice’s mandate requiring 100% licensing by ASCAP and BMI. She also helped to lead the groundbreaking mediations to help stakeholders come together to create and pass the Music Modernization Act (MMA). LaPolt is a vocal advocate for gay rights, channeling her own experiences of discrimination while rising the ranks in the music industry to speak out in support of the LGBTQIA+ community. LaPolt has been honored with numerous industry accolades; most recently, she received the Recording Academy’s prestigious Service Award in 2019, making her the youngest attorney and only the second woman to ever receive the award. She was named this year’s Variety’s Power of Law nominee for her advocacy work, and was inducted into the Billboard Women in Music Hall of Fame in 2019.
Valeisha Butterfield Jones
Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer, The Recording Academy
Valeisha Butterfield Jones serves as the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for the Recording Academy. She is an award-winning and globally recognized business leader with proven impact at the intersections of technology, politics and entertainment. Prior to this role, Jones served as the Global Head of Inclusion for Google, Inc. responsible for accelerating diversity, equity and inclusion outcomes for underrepresented communities internally and externally across the global brand. She has also held the roles of National Youth Vote Director for the Obama for America campaign, Deputy Director of Public Affairs for International Trade for the Obama Administration, Executive Director and SVP of Rush Communications (Hip-Hop Summit Action Network), and National Director of Diversity and Inclusion for the Alzheimer’s Association.
Jones also co-founded the Women in Entertainment Empowerment Network (WEEN) in 2007, a non-profit, global coalition of women and men committed to the balanced, positive portrayal of women in the entertainment industry. Her leadership has been recognized by Forbes, Fortune and Glamour Magazine, among others; she has been named to Ebony Magazine’s Power 100, The Root 100, Essence Magazine’s Top 40 Under 40, and Elle Magazine’s Top 25 Most Inspiring Women lists.
Head of Artist Relations (East Coast), YouTube
Co-Founder, Asian American Collective
Grace Lee currently leads YouTube’s artist relations team on the east coast. She is also a co-founder of Asian American Collective, a networking and mentoring collective for Asian Americans in the music industry. An accomplished executive with 15 years of experience in the music industry, she previously held multiple roles on the artist marketing team at YouTube. Before joining YouTube, Lee spent nine years at Columbia Records, joining the company as an assistant and exiting as VP of Visual Media. While at Columbia, she worked with a number of high-profile artists including Adele, Beyoncé, John Legend, HAIM, Daft Punk and J. Cole. She is passionate about helping artists at all stages of their careers.
SVP & GM, Entertainment One;
Co-Founder, Nashville Music Equality
Gina Miller is the SVP and GM of Entertainment One (eOne). In this role, she oversees the day to day operations for eOne in Nashville, including monikers eOne, Light Records and IndieBlu Music. eOne, Now part of global play and entertainment company Hasbro, eOne remains one of the world’s top independent labels and continues to dominate across a variety of track sales, albums and airplay charts. An active champion of numerous eOne/Hasbro D&I initiatives and committees, Miller also is a member of several boards and advisory councils. She is also a co-founder of Nashville Music Equality, an organization which educates and challenges non-minority colleagues to consider action around equality, tolerance and opportunities for all minorities in the music industry. She is currently a member of Women In Film, The Americana Music Association, Women In Music, the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated; the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and The Recording Academy, where she was recently appointed a Chapter Advisor. She also leads the Nashville Network of the National Association of Black Female Executives in Media & Entertainment™ (NABFEME), and is the Founder of the Beautiful Girl, You Are Already Enough campaign, amongst other initiatives.
Head of Artist Relations, SoundCloud
Erika Montes is a Head of Artists Relations at SoundCloud. Based out of SoundCloud’s Los Angeles office, Montes and her team are responsible for building and maintaining SoundCloud’s relationships with artists, managers, producers, and agents at varying levels of success and across genres. In addition, she educates the creator community on SoundCloud’s differentiated business model and best practices to help them drive success on the platform. Prior to SoundCloud, Montes was the Director of Label and Artist Relations at LoveLive, coordinating musical talent for major productions with Show Cobra clients including Amazon, AOL, Spotify and Verizon. Earlier in her career, she was the Vice President of Music Programming and Development at Fuse Networks, where she helped to launch the network’s YouTube channel, in addition to booking all Fuse linear and digital shows such as United States of Hip Hop, Hustle After Party, The Mixdown and CrateDiggers. She got her start in the label system working as an A&R assistant at Polygram and Universal Latino then spent 10 years at Island Def Jam rising the ranks to Senior Director of Video Promotions working with acts like Rihanna, Kanye West, and Fall Out Boy.
Wendy Moten is a multi-talented American singer-songwriter. In the late 1990s, Moten signed with EMI Records, where she recorded three solo albums and released the Billboard hit ballad, “Come In Out Of The Rain.” Along with her solo albums, Moten has recorded duets with top-selling artists including Michael McDonald (“No Love To Be Found”), Julio Iglesias (“Just Walk Away”), and John Oates (“Let’s Drive”). Moten also recorded the GRAMMY-nominated single, “Whatever You Imagine,” for the animated film The Pagemaster, starring Macaulay Culkin. Moten released her latest Country record I’ve Got You Covered, produced by Vince Gill, in February of 2020. Her recent Grand Ole Opry streaming livestream show garnered over 700,000 views based on Pollstar.
Rissi Palmer is a singer/songwriter who brings the entire spectrum of popular music to bear on music in a genre she calls “Southern Soul.” Her most recent release, Revival, has been critically hailed as her most personal and uplifting work yet. Palmer has performed at The White House, Lincoln Center, and the Grand Ole Opry; and has appeared on Oprah & Friends, CNN, The CBS Early Show, and The Tavis Smiley Show. She has shared stages with Taylor Swift, The Eagles, Chris Young, and Charley Crockett, and she has been featured in Rolling Stone, The Wall Street Journal, People, Parade, Ebony, Newsweek, and The Huffington Post. She can now be heard bi-weekly on Sunday afternoons on her Apple Music Country radio show, Color Me Country Radio w/ Rissi Palmer. On the show, Palmer brings to the forefront the Black, Indigenous, and Latinx histories of Country music that for too long have lived outside the spotlight and off mainstream airwaves.
2x GRAMMY Award-Winning Producer & Board President, Nashville Music Equality
Shannon Sanders serves as Board President for Nashville Music Equality, an organization committed to minimizing the equality gap that exists within the music industry in Nashville. He is also an accomplished songwriter, producer and artist who has worked with artists including India.Arie, Jonny Lang, John Legend and Robert Randolph. To date, his work has earned him two GRAMMYs, two Emmys, and one Dove Award. Sanders founded and serves as the program director of Nashville Scene’s “2018 Best Soul Radio Station,” 102.1 FM THE VILLE. In addition, he is a National Trustee of the Recording Academy, a city commissioner for the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation, a board member of the Nashville Ballet, and a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Inc. Sanders was also one of the music industry leaders selected for the Leadership Music Class of 2017.
Co-Lead Vocalist, Fitz and the Tantrums;
Founder, Diversify The Stage
Noelle Scaggs is Founder of Diversify The Stage, an organization established in Spring 2020 after she connected with industry leaders to discuss the lack of diversity encountered while on tour. Through these conversations, recognition of shared concerns, and need for change, she decided to partner with like-minded individuals and organizations to create action and long-term change. Scaggs is also co-lead vocalist of Alt-Pop band Fitz And The Tantrums, as well as an accomplished songwriter and solo artist. Her credits include co-writing her band’s chart-topping, platinum-certified singles “Out Of My League” and “The Walker.” In 2018, Scaggs was placed at #12 on Billboard’s list of Top 30 Female Artists in the Alternative Songs Chart’s History, amongst names like Gwen Stefani and Lorde. In November of 2018, she took a step outside of Fitz and The Tantrums and released solo record “Great For You.”
VP of Talent Acquisition, Americas, Sony Music Entertainment
Jeff Soto is VP of Talent Acquisition, Americas for Sony Music Entertainment, where he drives the company’s TA vision, strategy, and roadmap. He is a TA leader with 15 years of extensive experience leading teams, formulating recruiting strategies, and building relationships. Soto advocates for candidate experience, seeks to understand before offering a solution, and knows the importance of inspiring the teams he supports. He started his TA career in financial services and has since worked in entertainment, retail, and beauty.
VP of Marketing, Big Loud Records
Candice Watkins is VP of Marketing for Big Loud Records. In this role, she executes the innovative label’s marketing strategy for breakout talent to multi-platinum chart-toppers including Morgan Wallen, Jake Owen, Chris Lane, HARDY, Mason Ramsey, MacKenzie Porter, ERNEST, Ben Burgess, Ashland Craft, Larry Fleet, and Sean Stemaly. Prior to her time with Big Loud, she served as Sr. Director of Marketing & Artist Development at UMG Nashville, acting as a central hub for the label group and overseeing a quarter of the roster. Watkins is also all-hands-in with the cutting-edge label’s partnerships, like Nashville’s first-of-its-kind female-driven label Songs & Daughters, led by ACM award-winning songwriter Nicolle Galyon with artists Madison Kozak, Hailey Whitters, plus Tiera under its Publishing arm [Big Loud Publishing / Warner Chappell Music]. A 15-year industry veteran with dynamic, on-the-ground experience, Watkins was recently featured in Billboard’s high-profile 2020 Country Power Players list.
Solo Singer/Saxophonist & Singer, Trigger Hippy
Amber Woodhouse is a singer and saxophonist who blurs the lines between mainstream and the experimental. Woodhouse has found her groove in captivating audiences around the country with powerful but sultry vocals, mellow saxophone riffs and magnetic stage presence. As one of the lead singers of the band Trigger Hippy, as well as her own solo music, Woodhouse is constantly making her mark on the Nashville music scene and beyond.
Music Agent, Creative Artists Agency (CAA)
Co-Founder, Asian American Collective
Caroline Yim is a Music Agent at leading entertainment and sports agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA). Yim works in the LA office and represents many of the world’s leading musicians including Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals, Gunna, The Internet, Rae Sremmurd, Future, Kehlani, Ella Mai, Jay Rock, Daniel Caesar and Jhené Aiko. She is also a co-founder of Asian American Collective, a networking and mentoring collective for Asian Americans in the music industry. Yim has been named to Billboard’s “Women In Music” power list in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018; and was included in Billboard’s 2015 “40 Under 40” feature. She was also featured on Billboard’s Hip-Hop Power List in 2017, 2018 and 2019. For the past two years, she has been a Big Brothers Big Sisters LA Women In Entertainment Mentor.