Photo: Ashley Stewart of ANS Photography
VP Of Member & Industry Relations Kelley Purcell On How Recording Academy Members Can Make A Difference
The Recording Academy has announced the appointment of Kelley Purcell as Vice President of Membership & Industry Relations. The appointment follows the Recording Academy's restructure, which aims to streamline the organization and sharpen focus on its service to music. Reporting to Chief Industry Officer Ruby Marchand, Purcell will be responsible for overseeing all aspects of membership outreach, peer review, member account services, and the Academy's Chapter systems, including regional and local teams, Chapter events and programming, and all facets of Chapter service.
"We are pleased to have Kelley as our Vice President of Membership & Industry Relations," said Marchand. "Her expertise and history of being a driving force within the Membership & Industry Relations department make her a great asset to this organization. This is yet another step towards the Academy's transformational commitment as we strive for greater inclusivity and work to ensure our membership reflects the diverse individuals who make up our music community."
Purcell joined the Recording Academy as the Executive Director of the Los Angeles Chapter in 2013. She later transitioned to Senior Director of Member Outreach, leading industry outreach efforts across the Membership & Industry Relations department. During her tenure, she project managed a cross-department team of IT, Digital Media and Communications colleagues over a two-year period and successfully implemented historic changes to the Academy's membership systems. She also led the recruitment efforts to diversify Academy membership and was the liaison to the Academy's first-ever Peer Review Panel, responsible for training this body and serving as its point person.
Below, Purcell talks to GRAMMY.com about her new role and why it's so important for Recording Academy members to vote in the upcoming Awards cycle.
Can you tell us a little about your professional background and what led to your new role at the Recording Academy?
I have loved music since a young age but I think the power of music, and the arts in general, was cemented for me in college. I was an Economics major, but throughout my college career I was also very involved in lots of arts-focused extracurricular activities that gave me purpose and helped me develop a stronger sense of self. During that time I realized that if my career was going to mean something to me, it had to center around the arts in some way, and I committed to using all of my business skills to further something that had real meaning to me.
After building my career in arts administration in various positions, I was thrilled to join the Recording Academy as the Executive Director of the Los Angeles Chapter where I could focus my professional energies in support of music makers, specifically. Since joining the Academy I have held several roles within the Membership & Industry Relations team and am honored to now become the Vice President, where I can apply everything I’ve learned thus far for the greater good of the department as a whole.
What specifically do you hope to bring to your new role in Membership?
I want to ensure that every member of the Recording Academy understands that their membership can make a difference. Whether that’s participating in the GRAMMY Awards process, advocating for the rights of the music community in Washington D.C., or raising money for MusiCares or standing up for music education, this membership body plays a huge role in shaping the music industry that we want to see. Every member's voice counts and we are stronger together.
Why is it so important for current Recording Academy members to vote in the upcoming Awards cycle?
The GRAMMY award represents what professional music creators decide are the best musical works of the year. Because it’s the only award that is peer-to-peer, it is ideal when all peers are reflected in the process.
What can you tell us about the benefits of membership at the Recording Academy?
Membership is the lifeblood of the Recording Academy and the foundation of all that we do. Recording Academy members have the opportunity to play a part in creating a better world for music and its makers. In addition to advocating for the rights of music makers, supporting the next generation of the music industry and helping fellow music people in times of need, members can submit projects for GRAMMY Awards consideration, propose amendments to GRAMMY Awards rules, run for a Recording Academy Board, participate in member-only programs and more. The Recording Academy is a very special community of people who are united by how much they care about the music industry and want it to thrive.
What can you tell us about how all 12 Chapters engage RA members on a year-round basis?
Each of the 12 Chapters are a great resource for members to learn more about the best ways in which to get involved in all the Recording Academy does. Board members are elected at the local level to represent their communities and provide connective tissue between each member and the organization as a whole. In addition to producing local events and programs, Chapters help members become aware of all Academy initiatives and how each person can be of service to the greater mission.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?
To learn more about how to join the Recording Academy, please visit grammy.com/join!