Music Business Association to Present Sony Music’s Julie Swidler With 2020 Presidential Award

March 11, 2020The Music Business Association (Music Biz) today announced that it will present its 2020 Presidential Award for Outstanding Executive Achievement to Julie Swidler, Executive Vice President of Business Affairs and General Counsel for Sony Music Entertainment, in recognition of her accomplished industry leadership and many contributions to the success of the music business over the course of her career. Swidler will receive her award during the annual Music Biz Awards Dinner, taking place Wednesday, May 13 at the JW Marriott Nashville as part of the Music Biz 2020 Conference.

In her current role, Swidler advises Sony Music’s labels and operating units on all legal issues, deal-making and policy initiatives on a worldwide basis, including strategic digital negotiations, artist contracts, litigation, transactions, global government affairs, and joint venture operations. She also is a member of the Recording Academy’s Task Force on Diversity and Inclusion, serves on the board of directors for the RIAA, and is a Vice Chair of the TJ Martell Foundation. Repeatedly featured on Billboard’s Women in Music and Power 100 lists, Swidler was recently featured on Music Industry Quarterly’s 2020 Executives to Watch list. In 2016, she was the first woman to be awarded the Grammy Foundation’s ELI Service Award.

Swidler began her music career as a senior attorney for PolyGram Records, where she eventually became the SVP of Business & Legal Affairs for Mercury Records. In 1999 she was named head of business and legal affairs for Arista Records, working under Clive Davis. The following year she joined Davis and other Arista executives in launching J Records, which eventually merged with RCA Records to form the RCA Music Group.

“Julie Swidler has been a personal inspiration for me as an executive,” commented Music Biz President Portia Sabin. “Music Biz is thrilled to recognize Julie for the countless contributions she’s made to our industry — especially the ways she’s worked for women and underrepresented groups — in her nearly three decades of service. She makes all this hard work look easy!”

“I am truly honored that Portia and Music Biz have decided to honor me in this way,” Swidler said. “I have great admiration for the work that Music Biz and its predecessor has done over the years on behalf of the organizations and individuals that are responsible for bringing all of our artists’ wonderful music to their fans.”

The Music Biz Presidential Award is one of the Association’s highest honors, presented to individuals or organizations who have contributed greatly to the overall success of the music industry. Past recipients have included Sony Music Nashville’s Randy Goodman, Cary Sherman of the RIAA, UMG Nashville’s Mike Dugan, Epic Records’ Sylvia Rhone, the Country Music Association, the Recording Academy, and Dick Clark.


About Music Biz 2020

Music Biz 2020 will return to Nashville May 11-14 at the JW Marriott in the heart of downtown Nashville. The music industry’s premier business-focused event, the Music Biz Conference offers a platform for the commerce, content, and creative sectors of the industry to network, get on the cutting edge of the latest trends, and meet with trading partners. 

More program and awards announcements will be made in the coming weeks. For the most up-to-date conference information, visit You can register for Music Biz 2020 here


About The Music Business Association

The Music Business Association (Music Biz) is a not-for-profit membership organization that advances, promotes and invests in the future of the music business by providing a trusted forum where ideas and cooperation flourish. Through events, education and engagement, the Association brings together the full breadth of the industry for unparalleled access to networking, resources and thought leadership. 


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