The Recording Academy announced Thursday that Valeisha Butterfield Jones will be the first-ever Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer. Butterfield Jones joins the executive team following her position as global head of inclusion at Google.
According to GRAMMY.com, the award-winning business and tech leader will guide the team responsible for advancing the Academy’s diversity and inclusion initiatives through the organization. The new appointment comes on the heels of the controversial ousting of CEO Deborah Dugan, who was accused of misconduct from a female colleague.
“We are thrilled to welcome Valeisha Butterfield Jones into the Recording Academy family,” Academy Chair and Interim President/CEO Harvey Mason, Jr. said. “Valeisha has been a force in driving systemic change and enhancing equal opportunities for underrepresented groups across entertainment, technology and politics. I’m excited to work with her to continue evolving the Recording Academy as an organization that represents our music community and a place where all voices are welcomed, supported and nurtured. We are so fortunate to have Valeisha’s leadership in this crucial area.”
Leading by example, Valeisha Butterfield Jones is the blueprint for Black youth who desire to spark global change. She is the co-founder of Women in Entertainment Empowerment Network (WEEN), a nonprofit dedicated to empowering young women of color in the entertainment industry. Thanks to her transformational influence, she also helped deliver one of the highest youth voter turnouts in American history as the National Youth Vote Director for President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign.
Now, at the Academy, the highly recognized changemaker says she will work to create “systemic change and equitable outcomes for underrepresented communities and creators.”
“The Recording Academy has an opportunity and responsibility to ensure that diversity and inclusion is embedded in its core values. I’m deeply honored to join the Academy as we enter a new chapter of transformational growth, leadership and change,” Butterfield Jones said.
Butterfield Jones’ new position will be effective on May 11.