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The production team behind the 2022 #GRAMMYs welcomed the first Black woman co-executive producer, the first executive producer of Indian descent, and the first Black male executive producer.

How The New Executive And Co-Executive Producers Took The Helm At The 2022 GRAMMYs, Continuing Strides In Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

The production team behind the 2022 GRAMMYs welcomed the first Black woman co-executive producer, the first executive producer of Indian descent, and the first Black male executive producer.

GRAMMYs/Apr 9, 2022 – 12:38 am

When it comes to diversity, the Recording Academy doesn’t just talk the talk — it walks the walk.

And the production team for the 2022 GRAMMYs, officially known as the 64th GRAMMY Awards, is a testament to the organization’s commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI). Indeed, at this year’s awards show, Jesse Collins and Raj Kapoor served as executive producers, and Jeannae Rouzan-Clay as co-executive producer.

(Fulwell 73 Productions oversaw all aspects of the show for the second consecutive year. Ben Winston, who co-owns and runs Fulwell 73 Productions, served as showrunner in 2021 and executive producer in 2022; Kapoor served as showrunner and executive producer for the 2022 GRAMMYs. Hamish Hamilton returned as the show’s director.)

Beyond this team’s voluminous talent is a milestone for DEI for the GRAMMY Awards show: Jeannae Rouzan-Clay, who has executive-produced the “A GRAMMY Salute To The Sounds Of Change” special among many other music awards shows and TV specials, was the first-ever Black woman to serve as co-executive producer; Raj Kapoor was the first person of Indian descent to become an executive producer; and Jesse Collins, who’s been a producer for the annual GRAMMY Awards show for 17 years and who produced the Oscars and the Pepsi Super Bowl LV Halftime Show last year, was the first Black male executive producer.

“Running the GRAMMY Awards for the Recording Academy, CBS and the music community with Fulwell 73 is a dream come true,” Kapoor said last year. “We look forward to building on our success last year in fostering an environment of inclusivity and creativity while supporting nominees with one of the most dedicated and talented production teams in television helping to make more memorable GRAMMY moments for years to come.”

“Seventeen years ago, John Cossette and Ken Ehrlich brought me on to the GRAMMYs as a segment producer for Kanye West‘s performance of ‘Jesus Walks,'” Collins said. “Since then, it’s been an amazing journey being part of the GRAMMY family of producers to now being an executive producer of the show along with Ben Winston and Raj Kapoor. It is indeed a dream come true. I am especially thrilled to bring my longtime colleague, Jeannae Rouzan-Clay, to our team. Her vast wealth of creativity and knowledge of live show production will allow her to help us catapult the GRAMMYs into the future.”

“After producing numerous award shows with Jesse Collins for over 15 years, being brought on to the GRAMMYs as the first-ever Black female co-executive producer is a deep honor,” Rouzan-Clay said last year. “Joining the team as a creative executive is a full-circle moment for me and my career as one of my early jobs in show business was being an assistant on the GRAMMYs. I truly look forward to working with Jesse, Ben, Raj, and the entire team to build a fantastic show.”

This sea change built on the diversity of the team who produced this year’s GRAMMY Awards expands on the Recording Academy’s years-long, multifaceted efforts to strengthen DEI and representation at the GRAMMY Awards and the music industry at-large.

Also implemented at the 2022 GRAMMYs was the Recording Academy’s official GRAMMY Awards Inclusion Rider. Originally announced last August, this contract addendum was designed to be a powerful tool to ensure equity and inclusion at every level during the production of the show.

The Inclusion Rider also solidified the GRAMMYs as the first major music awards show production to publicly commit to using an inclusion rider, exemplifying the Recording Academy’s leadership and ingenuity in infusing the highest standards of inclusion, belonging and representation.

“I am proud that the Academy is leading the charge in releasing an Inclusion Rider for the music community that counters systematic bias,” Harvey Mason jr., CEO of the Recording Academy, said in the unveiling of the Inclusion Rider in October 2021. “We were proud to work with a very diverse crew last year for the GRAMMY Awards, and this is the culmination of a years-long effort to create a rider for the production of the GRAMMYs. But this is only the beginning. We are committed to putting in the real work required to help create a pipeline of diverse talent and drastically change representation.”

The Inclusion Rider was part of the larger #ChangeMusic initiative and created in partnership with Color Of Change, as well as co-authors Kalpana Kotagal (partner, Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll), Fanshen Cox (head of strategic outreach, Pearl Street Films), and key contributors Valeisha Butterfield Jones (Co-President of the Recording Academy) and Allie-Ryan Butler (Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at the Recording Academy).

With the diverse executive production team at the helm of the 2022 GRAMMYs and the Inclusion Rider at play, the Recording Academy has helped to inspire peers to modernize hiring practices industry-wide and foster an environment of inclusion.

Read the GRAMMY Awards Inclusion Rider in full and learn more about the Recording Academy’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiatives.

2022 GRAMMYs Awards Show: Complete Winners & Nominations List



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