T.J. Martell Honors Gala to Celebrate Nashville Leaders

unnamed-1The T. J. Martell Foundation will celebrate the achievements of Janet Miller, Louis Messina, Rod Essig, Dr. Joseph Smith, and Scott Hamilton during their 9th Annual Nashville Honors Gala at the Omni Hotel Feb. 27, 2017.

Janet Miller will receive the Spirit of Nashville Award. Miller has been a key player in Nashville’s development community for over 30 years. She joined Colliers Nashville as CEO and Market Leader in 2014 following 21 years of service as the Chief Economic Development Officer for the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce.

Messina will be honored with the Tony Martell Lifetime Entertainment Achievement Award. As Messina Touring Group CEO, he promotes the tours of Kenny Chesney, Eric ChurchTim McGraw and Faith Hill, Shawn Mendes, Ed Sheeran, and Taylor Swift.  In 1975, Messina co-founded PACE Concerts in Houston, which evolved to SFX and on to Clear Channel Entertainment, establishing Messina as one of the country’s preeminent promoters.  In 2001 he started his own company and began his partnership with AEG Live.

Essig will receive the Frances Preston Outstanding Music Industry Achievement Award. Essig is an agent at Creative Artists Agency, co-heading the Nashville office and representing some of the world’s top musicians, including Heart, Joan Jett and The Blackhearts, Martina McBride, Ashley Monroe, REO Speedwagon, Styx, and Tim McGraw.

Dr. Smith will be given the Medical Research Advancement Award. One of the top urologic surgeons in the world, Smith has grown Vanderbilt’s Department of Urologic Surgery to 36 faculty members with an international reputation for success. Smith performed Vanderbilt’s first robotic surgery in 2003 and has completed more than 5,000 prostatectomies since that time.

Hamilton will be honored with the organization’s Lifetime Humanitarian Award. He is an Olympic gold medalist and internationally acknowledged authority on figure skating and a skating analyst for NBC. He is also an actor, and New York Times bestselling-author. After surviving his own battle with testicular cancer, Scott launched the Scott Hamilton CARES Foundation (Cancer Alliance for Research, Education and Survivorship) to help improve cancer patient survivorship by supporting cancer research and the highest quality patient treatment and care. 

The event has netted more than $3 million for the organization since its inception in 2009. Table sponsorships and tickets to the Gala are available by contacting (615) 256-2002 or emailing [email protected]. Visit www.tjmartell.org for more information.


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Hollabaugh, a staff writer at MusicRow magazine, has over 20 years of music business experience and has written for publications including American Profile, CMA Close Up, Nashville Arts And Entertainment, The Boot and Country Weekly. She has a Broadcast Journalism and Speech Communication degree from Texas Christian University, (go Horned Frogs), and welcomes your feedback or story ideas at [email protected]

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