CRS In Action: CRS 2016 Kicks Off With Opening Ceremonies
February 8, 2016 at 3:00 PM (PT)
COUNTRY RADIO SEMINAR (CRS) 2016 Opening Ceremonies took place this afternoon (2/8), and started off on a high note when WARNER MUSIC NASHVILLE newcomer WILLIAM MICHAEL MORGAN performed his rendition of the NATIONAL ANTHEM as the U.S. MARINE COLOR GUARD presented the AMERICAN flag.
COUNTRY RADIO BROADCASTERS Pres. CHARLIE MORGAN said a few words and introduced NASHVILLE Mayor MEGAN BARRY, who addressed the crowd immediately following. She tributed the incredible growth of NASHVILLE to Country music, which she named as an essential part of NASHVILLE's identity. She thanked Country radio for NASHVILLE's recent achievement, being named one of FORBES TRAVEL GUIDE's 'Top 16 Destinations' for the world of 2016. "We wouldn't be a top destination without all of you," said BARRY. "Because every year each of you take a little bit of NASHVILLE with you and you send it out to your listeners. When you promote Country music, you promote NASHVILLE."
The ceremony continued with the acknowledgement of the three RUSTY WALKER SCHOLARSHIP winners for 2016 (NET NEWS 11/16). Named for the late RUSTY WALKER, the scholarships are designed to develop opportunities for young radio talent to attend CRS free of charge. This YEAR's winners include SAGA Country WVVR/CLARKSVILLE, TN morning host/Digital Content Coordinator NICK FOX, CHILDERS MEDIA Country WFGF/LIMA, OH Dir./Promotions/MD GARRETT SEARIGHT, and BICOASTAL Country KRWQ/MEDFORD, OR PD/morning personality ASHLEY GRENINGER, who are each attending CRS for the first time.
Hall Of Fame 2016 Class Honored
CAPITOL NASHVILLE artist LUKE BRYAN was on hand to acknowledge the COUNTRY RADIO HALL OF FAME Class of 2016. This YEAR's honorees include "AMERICA'S MORNING SHOW" host BLAIR GARNER; former KHKX/MIDLAND, TX team MIKE & DANA SHUFF; and WUSN/CHICAGO morning show co-host LISA DENT in the On-Air category; recently retired CRS RADIO/MINNEAPOLIS VP/Market Manager MICK ANSELMO; multi-station owner KERBY CONFER; late air personality and station GM JACK RENO; CBS RADIO/DETROIT OM TIM ROBERTS; and retired station owner JIM SLONE in the Radio category (NET NEWS 1/5).
BLAIR GARNER, LISA DENT, MICK ANSELMO, TIM ROBERTS and JIM SLONE were all present for the acknowledgement, and all of the honorees will be celebrated at the COUNTRY RADIO HALL OF FAME Dinner and Induction Ceremony, which will take place WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22nd at the OMNI NASHVILLE. Ticket information will soon be available on the CRS website here.
Artist Humanitarian Award
CAPITOL NASHVILLE group LADY ANTEBELLUM, who was last YEAR's recipient of the ARTIST HUMANITARIAN AWARD, made a presentation and showed a pre-recorded video to honor CAPITOL NASHVILLE artist KEITH URBAN with the CRS 2016 ARTIST HUMANITARIAN AWARD in recognition of his continued philanthropic efforts. URBAN is a supporter of numerous benefit concerts, including the annual “ALL FOR THE HALL” shows benefitting the COUNTRY MUSIC HALL OF FAME AND MUSEUM, which has raised nearly 2.5 million dollars since its inception in 2009.
Additionally, he is a supporter of THE GRAMMY IN THE SCHOOLS program, MR. HOLLAND’S OPUS FUND, the “MAKE A WISH” FOUNDATION, and ST. JUDE CHILDREN’S RESEARCH HOSPITAL. URBAN was also recently named the first Ambassador of the CMA FOUNDATION’s Education Program and has donated from his line of URBAN guitars to five MUSIC EDUCATION MATTERS partner programs across the country.
Following the NASHVILLE flood in 2010, URBAN was active in the relief efforts and participated in the re-opening of the GRAND OLE OPRY HOUSE, MARTY STUART’s “LATE NIGHT JAM,” GAC and VINCE GILL telethons, and more in an effort to raise funds for flood relief. URBAN has been a strong supporter of our nation’s troops and the NAVY SEALS FOUNDATION, to which he donated his share of artist and publishing royalties from his song, “For You,” which reached a total of $300,000.
URBAN received the award with thoughtful comments. "People always ask me, 'What is Country music?' and there's always so many answers to that. But the one thing I always believe to be true no matter where you come from is it's about community, and when I was nine my parents had joined a Country music club in BRISBANE, and we'd been members for about a year. We lived in a rural town and our house burned down, and we were all okay but we lost all our belongings, which wasn't much, but it was everything, and without hesitation the Country music club immediately held a fundraiser for us."
"And it was so apparent to me right from age nine that this is what it's about, people fall in hard times and people need help," said URBAN. "Various causes need help and support, so I'm just extremley grateful that I've been given a chance to bring a spotlight; that my wife and I both have causes that mean something to us and hopefully they can benefit from it. It's what I love to do more than anything."