After the 2018 Grammy Awards, plenty of music fans expressed their disappointment with the number of women (or lack thereof) who took home awards this year. Of the solo nominees, “Stay” singer Alessia Cara was the only female to take home an award which she won for Best New Artist.
To combat this problem, a task force has been put together by Michelle Obama’s former Chief of Staff to fight for a more inclusive Recording Academy. The ultimate purpose of the team is to “examine barriers and biases affecting women and other underrepresented voices in the music industry.”
Tina Tchen was appointed as the head of this panel on March 6. The task force includes 16 people within the music industry, ranging from artist and journalists to producers and even CEOs. Common, Jimmy Jam, Andra Day, Sheryl Crow and Black Entertainment Television CEO Debra Lee are some of the most prominent members.
“Tchen has spent weeks meeting with and listening to constituents across the music community, using that feedback to assemble a task force that is balanced in perspectives and interests to ensure that the group is independent and focused on making progress in the industry,” the Academy said in a press release.
It was also noted that the task force is working independently and none of the members of the task force are employed by the Recording Academy.
Below is a list of all 16 members of the panel:
- Stephanie Alexa, Vice President of Finance and Licensing Administration, ATO Records
- Michele Anthony, Executive Vice President and Executive Management Board Member, Universal Music Group
- Cam, GRAMMY-nominated artist
- Common, GRAMMY-winning artist
- Sheryl Crow, GRAMMY-winning artist
- Andra Day, GRAMMY-nominated artist
- Giselle Fernandez, award-winning television journalist
- Jimmy Jam, GRAMMY-winning artist
- Beth Laird, CEO and co-owner, Creative Nation
- Debra Lee, Chairman and CEO, BET Networks
- Rebeca Leon, co-founder and CEO, Lionfish Entertainment
- Elizabeth Matthews, CEO, ASCAP
- Dr. Stacy L. Smith, Founder and Director, USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative
- Ty Stiklorius, Founder and CEO, Friends At Work
- Julie Swidler, Executive Vice President of Business Affairs and General Counsel, Sony Music
- Dean Wilson, CEO, SEVEN20