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Twitch Taps Former YouTube Exec Constance Knight As Its First VP Of Creators

Twitch is quickly becoming the future of live entertainment. As its popularity with creators continues to rise, it’s positioned itself to expand its team to support its growth. This week, the Amazon-owned live-streaming platform recruited former YouTube executive Constance Knight to take over the newly created role of VP, global creators at the company, according to Variety. “Creators are the heart and soul of Twitch, and as we continue to see more people finding their community on Twitch, now is the perfect time to add more support for global creators to our internal team,” said Michael Aragon — chief content officer at Twitch — in a statement of Knight’s hire. “Constance is an experienced and passionate leader who brings a wealth of knowledge from across the streaming industry. Her perspective will be invaluable in helping Twitch and its creators grow and thrive.” Knight — who did a nine-year tenure as YouTube’s head of content programs and partnerships for creator communities...

Jul 28, 2021

Color of Change And Diverse Representation Launch Program To Increase Black Music Execs In The Industry

Last year, the Recording Academy and social justice nonprofit Color of Change announced their joint initiative, #ChangeMusic, to bring equity to Black creators and professionals in the music industry. This week, Color of Change continues that work by partnering with Diverse Representation — a database of Black agents, attorneys, managers, and publicists in the sports and entertainment industries — to launch the Black Music Executives Pipeline Program. According to Forbes, this new program is the first to be released from #ChangeMusic and will rely on the expertise of both the non-profit organization and diversity database to help increase the number of active Black executives in the music industry. Additionally, the program will also be responsible for creating an effective tool that will “allow record labels, publishers, video production companies, streaming services and touring companies to quickly identify and hire Black professionals,” Billboard reports. While #ChangeMusic was...

Jul 1, 2021

More Black Executives In Corporate America? Valence Wants To Make That Happen

Since opening its platform for applications in March 2020, Valence’s membership has exploded. They managed to build an impressive network of Black professionals and creatives spanning industries such as tech, entertainment, sports, and finance. Many large companies now recruit through the platform in an effort to pull in more diverse candidates. “We came to market with a real focus on building community, ensuring that the community had access to one another on the platform, access to opportunities through jobs and companies that were offering those opportunities, and access to capital through the valence funding network,” explains Emily Slade, one of the Valence co-founders. Now, Valence is going a step further to help Black professionals thrive and ascend the ranks in their chosen industries through BONDS — their new mentorship program for Black professionals at or near the executive career levels. What is Valence BONDS? “It’s a membership-based community that’s really focused on...

May 11, 2021

Black-Led ExecOnline Secured $45M To Further Develop Its Online Executive Educational Programs

Aligned with some major growth plans, New York-based ExecOnline closed a $45 million Series D funding round. Co-founded in 2012 by Stephen Bailey, Mark Ozer, Barry Goldberg, and Julia Alexander, ExecOnline provides executive education programs and training solutions certified by educational institutions. The company partners with business schools around the world to bring democratized access to leadership development at large companies. “We feel like we have a differentiated and compelling story having pioneered this space,” The company’s CEO Bailey told AfroTech in an interview. “We hopefully want to create awareness that there is a new way to develop leaders that can create much more equity outcomes at organizations.” This latest funding round was led by OMERS Growth Equity with participation from previous investors including Kaplan, Osage Ventures, NewSpring and ABS Capital Partners. ExecOnline plans to use the Series D to further develop its online platform, expand its...

Apr 21, 2021

Entertainment Exec Brandon Pankey Launches First-of-Its-Kind Video Network to Deliver Diverse Music Content

The music industry is getting another game-changing platform thanks to entertainment executive Brandon Pankey. Pankey — who has years of experience in the entertainment industry working for companies such as Live Nation and Maverick — has just announced the launch of Artist Presented Experiences (APEX) — a first-of-its-kind AVOD video network that’s dedicated to promoting music programming presented both by and for artists. According to a press release, APEX is a platform that will offer up diverse, artist-centric content for viewers that features some of the industry’s most influential and sought-after talent, as they produce and create original scripted, unscripted, and licensed programming. The purpose of APEX — which is powered by award-winning brand services agency Quantasy + Associates — is for the platform to operate as a unique model that grants artists the creative freedom they need to deliver unfiltered content and visions directly to their fans. “Artists are some of the...

Mar 31, 2021

M·A·C Cosmetics Names Aïda Moudachirou Rebois As SVP of Global Marketing

M·A·C Cosmetics, a leading global provider and purveyor of health and beauty products, has announced that it has named Aïda Moudachirou Rebois as the Senior Vice President of Global Marketing. In a press release announcement, it was revealed that Moudachirou Rebois will oversee the Consumer Marketing and Product Marketing teams with a dotted line management responsibility for Product Development to drive global Consumer Engagement strategies and deliver breakthrough Product Innovation in order to maximize consumer connection to M·A·C Cosmetics. “Aïda has an innovative and flexible leadership style, cross-industry experience and global brand-building expertise, which combined with her multilingual, multicultural background, will undoubtedly help to drive the global M·A·C  business forward in our complex fast-changing environment,” said Philippe Pinatel , Global Brand President of M·A·C Cosmetics, in the press release announcement. “We couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome her to the...

JPMorgan Chase Appoints Financial Services Vet Reggie Chambers As New Head of Investor Relations

JPMorgan Chase & Co. is expanding its senior leadership team and adding more diversity in the process. According to a news release, the financial services giant named veteran executive Reggie Chambers as its new head of Investor Relations this week. He will replace JPMorgan Chase executive, Jason Scott, effective Jan. 1, 2021. Scott, who has led the company’s Investor Relations team since 2016, will be taking on a new role at JPMorgan Chase as head of Global Technology Finance. According to Black Enterprise, Chambers currently serves as the firm’s Chief Administrative Officer for Chase Consumer Banking where he oversees all branch innovation and operations for the Consumer Bank. This includes managing branch real estate, ATMs, branch innovation labs, and many other things. In his new role, he will report to JPMorgan Chase CFO Jennifer Piepszak while leading a team of employees responsible for maintaining relationships with investors and analysts, an announcement shares ....

Nov 25, 2020

Will Smith & Jada Pinkett Smith Tap Three Black Execs For Westbrook Media Company

Black executives in the entertainment industry are steadily climbing the leadership ladder. According to an exclusive from Variety , Westbrook Media —  a digital subsidiary of Westbrook Inc. launched by founders Jada Pinkett Smith, Will Smith, Miguel Melendez, and Ko Yada — has shared that it’s tapped three seasoned executives — Sterling Milan, Jabari Hearn, and Drew Miles — for senior roles at the company. Seasoned producer Sterling Milan joins the company as the full-time head of original content, following his recent stint as an in-house executive producer, showrunning and directing series and specials for Westbrook Media originals. In a statement shared with Variety , Lukas Kaiser — SVP, head of content at Westbrook Media — said: “I’ve been a friend and a fan of Sterling’s for over a decade — and bringing him on to lead the creative side of production on numerous projects over the past few months has been a joy. We’re thrilled to bring him into the Westbrook Media family to help...

Nov 16, 2020

Urban Skin Rx® Adds Black Girl Magic to Board of Directors, Appoints Melissa Bulter & Deisha Barnett

Urban Skin Rx® has added some Black girl magic to its board! According to PR Newswire , Melissa Butler, and Deisha Barnett have been appointed to the company’s Board of Directors. Barnett serves as the Chief Brand & Communications Officer and Head of Diversity & Inclusion at the Metro Atlanta Chamber. In her previous roles, she used her expertise in multicultural consumer-focused initiatives as she led marketing and communications strategies for Procter & Gamble and Walmart. Butler is the CEO and founder of The Lip Bar and a groundbreaking entrepreneur dedicated to the disruption of beauty industry norms, and prioritizing vegan beauty products, and beauty industry diversity. The women will join Cheryl Moss, Rachel Roff, and Steven Skoler. Moss is the director of Friend Skoler & Co., an investment firm that recently made an investment to support the rapid growth of the company dedicated to leading brands in the smaller end of the middle market. Roff is the founder and CEO of Urban...

Nov 12, 2020

Georgia Power Appoints Chris Womack As Company's New CEO, Chairman & President

Georgia Power just made an electric move! The utility company based in Atlanta announced that Chris Womack has been elected by the Georgia Power Board of Directors to become the company’s new chairman, president, and CEO. Womack will succeed current chairman Paul Bowers who is set to retire in April 2021. Although he won’t retire until next year, Womack will assume his new role on Nov. 1, 2020, and will also take over additional responsibilities as both CEO and chairman once Bowers completely steps down. “It’s an exciting time to be back at Georgia Power, especially when we’re poised to make history with the first new nuclear units in the U.S. in decades, said Womack who currently serves as the president and executive vice president of External Affairs for Southern Co., the parent company of Georgia Power. He expresses his excitement to rejoin the Georgia Power family. “This company has an incredible legacy of delivering world-class customer service and reliability to Georgians,...

Oct 30, 2020

Digital Creator-Entrepreneur & Former Patreon Exec Camille Hearst Named Head of Spotify for Artists

Streaming giant Spotify is getting new leadership to guide its artist-focused platform and app. To help lead this project, the global streaming company has named Camille Hearst — a digital creator-entrepreneur and seasoned tech executive — as Head of Spotify for Artists — a resource that allows artists to manage their presence on the platform, promote new releases, explore statistics, insights, and other educational resources, Variety reports . In her newly-appointed role, New York-based Hearst will manage a cross-functional team that includes product, tech, design, user research and more, according to Variety . She will report to Charlie Hellman –Spotify’s VP and Head of Marketplace — while also having a chance to work closely with SoundBetter , the world’s leading marketplace of professional engineers, singers, and producers. An excited Hearst shared the big news yesterday via Twitter: Exciting news! I’m joining Spotify as the Head of Spotify for Artists. In this new role, I’ll...

Oct 7, 2020

How Empowrd Is Using Tech To Increase Civic Engagement

When Horace Williams left his executive position at Oracle, he wanted to create something that could have a huge impact on his community. The New York-native began developing his own platform focused on civic engagement in 2013 and Empowrd was born. Empowrd is based in Atlanta where the startup scene is taking off for Black entrepreneurs. Williams said the city has become communal space for Black founders and many leaders are leaning on each other to foster success. Empowrd is an app for individuals and organizations to stay informed and to motivate political action. Users can access news, contact elected officials and find ways to get engaged within their communities. Organizations use the app to conduct surveys on their constituents, build partnerships with influencers and political leaders, and access data analytics. Photo: Empowrd AfroTech had a chance to chat with Williams about Empowrd and the problem he’s trying to solve using tech. This interview has been lightly edited for...

Mar 12, 2019