Each year the organization chooses roughly two dozen individuals working in the bluegrass world in a competitive process to spend several days together in a sessions and workshops designed to assist them in becoming leaders in our industry. Typically the class includes artists, teachers, label representatives, radio programmers, association staff, manufacturers and retailers, and event producers.
IBMA brings in speakers and workshop leaders to spend time with the attendees, who pay a fee and their costs for accommodations and meals while in town. To date, more than 400 people have become members of the very exclusive club, which fosters networking and communications among professional grassers.
Invited for March 2-4 are:
- Jake Blount – Washington, D.C.
- David Brower – PineCone / WUNC – Carrboro, NC
- Thomas Cassell – Circus No. 9 – Johnson City, TN
- Ethan Charles – International Bluegrass Music Association – Nashville, TN
- Jennifer Danielson – Pandora – Nashville, TN
- Worth Dixon – D’Addario & Company, Inc. – Farmingdale, NY
- Rick Faris – Special Consensus – Topeka, KA
- Rebecca Frazier – Rebecca Frazier and Hit & Run – Nashville, TN
- Greg Garrison – Leftover Salmon / University of Colorado – Denver – Lakewood, CO
- Dave Howard – Louisville Folk School – Louisville, KY
- Fred Knittel – Smithsonian Folkways Recordings – Washington, D.C.
- Marianne Kovatch – Blue Ridge Music Center – Winton-Salem, NC
- Evie Ladin – Evie Ladin Band – Oakland, CA
- Michelle Lee – WOBL / Bluegrass Borderline / Smoked Country Jam – Sheffield Lake, OH
- Ed Leonard – Billy Blue Records – Hendersonville, TN
- Ned Luberecki – Becky Buller Band / SiriusXM – Nashville, TN
- Didier Philippe – La Roche Bluegrass Festival – Etaux, France
- Lauren Price Napier-The Price Sisters – Hyden, KY
- Angela Sommers Rees – Dorrigo Folk & Bluegrass Festival – Dorrigo, NSW, Australia
- Brian Swenk – Big Daddy Love / Midwood Entertainment – Glen Allen, VA
- Abi Tapia – Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum – Nashville, TN
- Suzy Thompson – Berkeley Old Time Music Convention – Berkeley, CA
- Amanda Thompson – Frankfort Bluegrass Festival – Mokena, IL
- Roxanne Tromly – Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame and Museum / ROMP Fest – Owensboro, KY
- Natalya Weinstein Miller – Zoe & Cloyd / Warren Wilson College – Fairview, NC
- Benjamin Wright – Henhouse Prowlers / Bluegrass Ambassadors – Chicago, IL
As described on the IBMA web site…
Leadership Bluegrass seeks to explore bluegrass music and its place in the larger world of entertainment through:
- Systematic study of the business of bluegrass, and the needs, problems and resources of its institutions and organizations.
- Exposure to a wide variety of current music leaders and notable persons.
- Encouragement of independent thinking, fresh perspectives and approaches.
- Acquaintance with relevant issues facing bluegrass and the IBMA, from their history to future possibilities.
- Substantive interactive sessions for the participants.
Congratulations to this year’s class!