SOCAN today announced the results of its 2021 Board of Directors election, based on votes cast by SOCAN members (music creators, publishers) from April 12 to April 30, 2021.

There are 18 seats on the SOCAN Board of Directors – nine writer members and nine publisher members, with regional, cultural and genre specific representation. Each is elected to a three-year term.

The following people were elected and will take office when scrutineers Grant Thornton officially present the results at the 2021 SOCAN Annual General Meeting, to be held online on July 13, 2021.

Representing SOCAN Music Writer Members (alphabetically by last name):

  • David Bussières
  • Victor Davies *
  • Damhnait Doyle *
  • Rhonda Head
  • Ed Henderson *
  • Stan Meissner *
  • Glenn Morley *
  • Marc Ouellette *
  • Diane Tell *

Representing SOCAN Music Publisher Members (alphabetically by company name):

  • Diane Pinet, Bloc-Notes Music Publishing
  • Jennifer Beavis, BMG Rights Management Canada
  • Jennifer Mitchell, Casablanca Media Publishing *
  • Daniel Lafrance, Éditorial Avenue
  • Mark Jowett, Nettwerk Music Group
  • Cheryl Link, Peermusic Canada Inc. *
  • Gary Furniss, Sony Music Publishing Canada *
  • Patrick Curley, Third Side Music *
  • Vivian Barclay, Warner/Chappell Music Canada *

(* incumbent)

“Congratulations to each SOCAN board member on their election to the 2021-’24 term,” said CEO Jennifer Brown, who was officially appointed to the role by SOCAN’s Board of Directors on June 28, 2021. “The SOCAN management team looks forward to collaborating as we chart new directions for the company together.”

Following SOCAN’s annual general meeting, the new board of directors will hold its first meeting, and elect the President of the Board and other officers.

In 2020, YouTube Music launched the #YouTubeBlack Voices Fund to equip Black musicians with the resources and support to enable them to thrive, and invest in work that amplifies the voices, perspectives, and stories of Black artists.

On June 21, 2021, YouTube opened grant applications for the #YouTubeBlack Voices Fund Class of 2022, with expanded eligibility to include songwriters and producers. The company has also opened up applications for those based in Canada, as well as the U.K., the U.S., Brazil, Australia, Kenya, South Africa, and Nigeria.

Black Canadian music creators can apply now for #YouTubeBlack Voices Fund, until July 9, 2021.

YouTube has also announced a partnership with the music education institution 1500 Sound Academy, founded by Grammy Award-winning songwriter/producers James Fauntleroy and Larrance “Rance” Dopson. Through its inaugural #YouTubeBlack Music Future Insiders Scholarship, YouTube and 1500 will fund 10 full scholarships to the Academy’s Live Online Music & Industry Fundamentals program – a six-month term, during which participants will take courses in music production, engineering, songwriting, mixing, music business, and more.

YouTube has also been working with community-based organizations to develop its Future Insiders program, which has reached more than 180 (and counting) at-risk and under-served youth aspiring to enter the music and creative industries. As part of the program, the students attend quarterly workshops that focus on succeeding on YouTube, raising awareness of career pathways, facilitating access to talent and thought leaders, and encouraging well-being.

YouTube has created #YouTubeMusic Moments as well, a collection of content series, live streams, and events that hold the primary goal of celebrating Black culture, identity, and experiences, from the perspective of artists and thought leaders in music.

For more information, click here.

To apply for the #YouTubeBlack Voices Fund, click here.

The board of directors of SOCAN has appointed Jennifer Brown Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. Brown had held an interim CEO role since April 2020, and she becomes the first woman to lead Canada’s largest music and visual arts rights organization, as well as the first to be appointed to the role from within the company.

“Jennifer Brown’s work at SOCAN is exemplary, her leadership abilities are remarkable, and her passion for the interests of our members and stakeholders is unsurpassed,” said Marc Ouellette, President of SOCAN’s Board of Directors. “It’s a great pleasure to see her rise to a role that she earned through decades of constant commitment and persistent determination to do what’s right for our more than 175,000 members, and nearly 300 employees.”

With more than two decades of strategic experience in rights management, licensing, advocacy, and support for music creators and publishers, Brown started her career with SOCAN in in 1995 as a representative in the company’s Membership department. She’s held progressive leadership positions, including Vice President of SOCAN’s Licensing department, before taking on the role of Senior Vice President of Operations & Reproduction Rights in 2018.

Admired by her colleagues for her intelligence, humility, and hands-on style, Jennifer Brown’s numerous accomplishments with SOCAN include establishing SOCAN’s Reproduction Rights presence, guiding the company’s Licensing department to record-setting results, establishing SOCAN’s cost-effective and strategic re-structuring, and the introduction of new and innovative customer-facing tools, all of which have resulted in improved licensing collection efforts and increased royalties distributed to SOCAN’s songwriter, composer, and music publisher members.

Jennifer Brown grew up in a household in which royalties from music creation and performance were a crucial source of income. The Family Brown would become one of the country’s more successful recording and performing groups, and her father, as the principal songwriter, achieved several songwriting awards.

“I know what it’s like to rely on fair royalties through hard work, and I’ve seen songwriting as a career first-hand,” Brown said. “I’ll continue to work to make SOCAN the organization that our members and licensed organizations so richly deserve.”

SOCAN also recently announced the appointment of Jean-Christian Céré as Chief Membership Officer, effective June 28, 2021, and Vanessa Thomas to the role of Vice-President, Member & Industry Relations, which came into effect on June 14, 2021.