Nashville Music Equality will host “Cool Stuff Kids – Honoring Those Who Did Incredible Things for the Sake of Diversity” tonight (Dec. 7). The program will review 2021 and recognize the strides that have been made, as well as assess where the organization’s goals for 2022.
Hosted by award-winning producer Frank Liddell and Sr. VP & General Manager of MNRK (Nashville) Gina Miller, the night will feature guest panelists Ayappa Biddanda, Lindsay LaBennett, Shy Carter, and Marcus K. Dowling. The webinar will begin at 6 p.m. CT. To register, click here.
Read more about each panelist below:
Biddanda is the Sr. Director, National Grass Roots, Video, & Tour Promotion at Concord. Since 2004, he has overseen the Radio Department for Vanguard & Sugar Hill Records, prior to joining the Concord Promotion team. He now leads the Roots division for Concord and its family of labels, serving artists in both traditional and innovative spaces.
LaBennett started her career as an Account Executive in the Diversity Affairs department for NASCAR where she led the charge in managing the NASCAR HBCU College Tour, NASCAR Diversity Internship Program, and NASCAR’s Supplier Diversity Initiative. She has also spent time at Wasserman where she manages aspects of client relationships across Nationwide Insurance and their NASCAR, VCU Men’s Basketball, and Ohio State University Football team relationships. At Wasserman, LaBennett has focused on driving multi-cultural efforts, including diversity recruiting and cultural competency as a founding member of Wasserman’s Diversity and Inclusion Council. She was recently appointed to the new role of Sr. Director of Inclusion, Equality, and Diversity where she will act as an advisor to the Executive Leadership Team and have primary responsibility and accountability on Diversity & Inclusion issues.
Artist, songwriter, and producer Carter has credits that span Kane Brown’s “Heaven” to Charlie Puth’s “One Call Away.” He is among the writers behind Billy Currington’s “It Don’t Hurt Like it Used To,” Sugarland’s smash hit “Stuck Like Glue” and Rob Thomas’ single “Someday.” Carter has worked with Jason Derulo, Meghan Trainor, Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Lopez, Nelly, and more. His roots in gospel, jazz, R&B, and soul mixed with his gift for storytelling and love of organic instrumentation led to a natural transition into country music.
Dowling is a veteran, award-winning music journalist. He was recently named the 2021 recipient of the Rolling Stone Chet Flippo Award for Excellence in Country Music Journalism. His contributions have seen him write for CMT, Billboard, Rolling Stone, Vice, The FADER, VIBE, Complex, Bandcamp, No Depression, and more. Dowling has been quoted by the Associated Press, ESPN, the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and The Tennessean.
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