Joe Galante, Chairman of the CMA Foundation Board of Directors, was honored Monday night with the CMA Foundation Chairman’s Memento during a dinner for the CMA Board of Directors at the new CMA corporate offices on Music Row.
“Joe is a passionate advocate for the advancement of quality music education and CMA’s support of sustainable music education programs across the country,” said Sarah Trahern, CMA Chief Executive Officer. “He has made a personal commitment to not only chair the Foundation Board, but visit programs and meet with music education leaders to create and implement best practices for the grants we provide on behalf of our artist community.”
“This truly has been an honor for me to work with the Foundation Board, [CMA Senior Manager of Community Outreach] Tiffany Kerns, and Sarah to provide music education across the country benefiting over one million students, and there are so many more that are deserving of our attention and time. We will continue to champion these impactful programs and work towards helping even more students gain access.” said Galante.
Galante was presented the CMA Foundation Chairman’s Memento by Destini Thompson, 17, a student at the W.O. Smith Music School in Nashville. The school provides low-cost, after-school music instruction to deserving students and is a beneficiary of the CMA Foundation. During a performance by Thompson and other students from the school, Galante presented Executive Director Jonah Rabinowitz with their 2017 grant of $100,000, which brings the CMA Foundation’s total support for W.O. Smith Music School to $325,000.
Galante is a founding member of the CMA Foundation Board of Directors, which was created in 2011 by CMA to have oversight of CMA’s charitable giving. Galante served as Vice Chair (2011-2013) and was previously chairman in 2014.
Joe Galante began his career in the music business with RCA Records in New York in 1971 as Manager of Financial Analysis. He arrived in Nashville three years later as Manager of Administration. During the next several years he held jobs as Vice President of Promotion and Vice President of Marketing and Operations. Galante’s rise saw him become the youngest man to lead a major Nashville label when he took over as head of RCA Nashville in 1981. In 1990, he was named President of RCA Records in New York, returning to Nashville four years later as Chairman of RCA Label Group/Nashville, encompassing the RCA and BNA labels and adding the Arista Nashville imprint in 2000. In 2002 he also added Provident label group, the leader in Christian music. Four years later, welcoming Columbia Nashville as its fourth imprint, the label group became Sony BMG Nashville, adopting the Sony Music Nashville name in 2009.
In April of 2010, after 40 years within the same label family, Galante announced his decision to step down from his post as Chairman of Sony Music Nashville. Currently he is a board member of Pinnacle, Entrepreneur Center, Artist Growth LLC, Fishbowl Spirits, and CMA. He is an advisor to Flo and mentor in residence at the Entrepreneur Center.
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