Recording Academy Extends Over 2,300 New Membership Invites

The Recording Academy has invited more than 2,300 music professionals from wide-ranging backgrounds, genres and disciplines to become members to help influence progressive changes within the music industry.

The 2020 class of invitees is 48% female, 21% African American/African descent, eight percent Hispanic, and three percent Asian American and Pacific Islander. The class representation also spans different ages, genres and regions. The Recording Academy’s current membership is 26 percent female and 25 percent from traditionally underrepresented communities.

“We are proud of the strides we’ve made toward ensuring our membership is diverse and inclusive, which is reflected within this new pool of invitees,” said Harvey Mason jr., Chair and Interim President/CEO of the Recording Academy. “While this progress signifies meaningful impact, there’s still more work to be done. We’ll continue to fight to achieve inclusive representation across gender, race, age, national origin, sexual orientation, and beyond within our community. Furthermore, we’re excited to see how the contributions of the incoming new member class will help inspire meaningful change within the music industry.”

Convening virtually in April, the Recording Academy’s Peer Review Panel of music creators evaluated new member submissions considering criteria including craft, genre and overall diversity. The more than 2,300 new invitations were extended under the Academy’s community-driven and peer-reviewed membership model. Implemented in 2018 in an ongoing effort to build a more representative and relevant membership body, the annual member submission process entails two community-centered key elements: industry recommendations and peer review.

To celebrate the incoming new member class, Editor-In-Chief Justin Dwayne Joseph hosted a moderated discussion on June 24 titled “Your Academy: Welcoming The 2020 New Member Class.” Featuring new invitees and existing members, the conversation showcased a look into what it means to be a member of the Academy, the important initiatives worked on year-round, progress members hope to see within the Academy, and diversity and inclusion in the music industry at large. The roundtable debuted today on


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Hollabaugh, a staff writer at MusicRow magazine, 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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