IBMA Announces Leadership Bluegrass 2009 Graduates

IBMA Announces Leadership Bluegrass 2009 Graduates


leadershipbluegrass2009-small1The International Bluegrass Music Association is pleased to announce the graduating class of Leadership Bluegrass 2009, listed below.  Leadership Bluegrass, now in its tenth year with more than 225 alumni, is an intensive three-day program of advanced level, interactive learning experiences that invites participants to examine the challenges and opportunities facing our music along with related leadership issues.


Leadership Bluegrass 2009 was hosted March 10-12 at BMI in Nashville, Tenn., and was facilitated again by Fred Bartenstein, a noted bluegrass historian and professional meeting facilitator.Each year approximately 25 individuals are selected to participate in Leadership Bluegrass, a program designed to build commitment, motivate talents and instill enthusiasm for addressing the future of the bluegrass music industry. Class members represent a cross section of current and future leaders from various facets of the industry, as well as diverse regions of the country and world.



Congratulations to the following graduates:  

  • John Abrams; The Abrams Brothers; Gananoque, Ontario, Canada
  • Danny Clark; MTSU student/ The Bluegrass Bus Museum; Goodlettsville, Tenn. 
  • Larry Cordle; Lonesome Standard Time; Hendersonville, Tenn.
  • David Crow; Milom, Joyce, Horsnell & Crow PLC; Nashville, Tenn.
  • Lee Michael Demsey; WAMU-FM,, Bluegrass Unlimited; Washington, D.C.
  • Brandi Hart; The Dixie Bee-Liners; Abingdon, Va.
  • Hannah Johnson; The Toy Hearts, Birmingham Univ. student; West Midlands, U.K.
  • Becky Johnson; WMMT-FM/ The Appalshop, Inc.; Whitesburg, Ky.
  • Gary Jolicoeur; WNRV Bluegrass Radio; Narrows, Va.
  • Karl Kersey; Fiddle and Pick; Pegram, Tenn.
  • Barry Mazor; Journalist/Author (No Depression, The Wall Street Journal); Nashville, Tenn.
  • Penni McDaniel; Hope River Entertainment, Rural Rhythm Records; Lawrenceville, Ga. 
  • Janet McGarry; Diamond Productions PEI, Janet McGarry & Wildwood; Stratford, PE, Canada
  • C. Roger Moss; Podunk Bluegrass Music Festival; East Hartford, Conn.
  • Tom Mueller; The Muellers; Waterville, Me.
  • David Preston; BMI; Nashville, Tenn.
  • Ronnie Reno; BlueHighways TV, Ronnie Reno & the Reno Tradition; Hendersonville, Tenn.
  • Leah Ross; Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion; Bristol, Va./Tenn.
  • Sammy Shelor; Lonesome River Band; Meadows of Dan, Va.
  • Tommy Sivert; Gold Tone Musical Instruments; Titusville, Fla.
  • Tom Thorpe; Dyer Switch Bluegrass Band; Albany, N.Y.
  • Alan Tompkins; Bluegrass Heritage Foundation, Acoustic Music Camp; Dallas, Texas
  • Jim Van Cleve; Mountain Heart; Producer/Songwriter/Session Musician; Hendersonville, Tenn.
  • Joe Weed; Musician, Music & Video Producer; Los Gatos, Calif.
  • Pete Wernick; Dr. Banjo, Pete Wernick & Flexigrass; Pete & Joan Wernick, Hot Rize; Niwot, Colo.
  • Dwight Worden; San Diego Bluegrass Society, IBMA Board of Directors; Del Mar, Calif.

Thanks to the following sponsors of Leadership Bluegrass 2009:
Presentation Sponsors:
BMI, Fred Bartenstein & Associates
Silver Sponsors: Katy Daley, WAMU’s; Brian Smith, Value Music Concepts Inc.; Trisha & John Tubbs, SoftResources LLC;
Patrons: Becky Buller, Valerie Smith & Liberty Pike; Deb Durant, Brandywine Friends of Old Time Music; Arnie Fleischer, The Emelin Theatre; Bill Foster, Bluegrass Unlimited; Richard Hawkins, Bluegrass Ireland; Dan Keen, ASCAP; Pete & Kitsy Kuykendall, Bluegrass Unlimited; George McKnight, Uptown Bluegrass Radio & IBMM’s Banks of the Ohio; Lorraine Short, PrymeTyme Solutions; A/
WWW Enterprises (Archie & Priscilla Warnock)
Additional support: Nick Barr, WAMC; Louisa Branscomb, Ph.D.; Jessie Law, Belmont Univ. student/The Andrea Roberts Agency; Roger Ryan, Country Music Association of Ireland; Joe Steiner, WFLC Blue Ridge Breakdown; Jeanette & Johnny Williams, The Jeanette Williams Band


The Leadership Bluegrass Planning Committee this year included Archie Warnock (chair), Brian Smith (vice-chair), Trisha Tubbs, Holly Tashian, Larry Shell, Stephanie Taylor, Ron Cox, Fred Bartenstein and Nancy Cardwell (staff liaison). Smith, Tashian, Don Tucker and Kitsy Kuykendall served on the Selection Committee.


For information on the next Leadership Bluegrass class scheduled for 2010 in Nashville, contact Nancy Cardwell at (615) 256-3222, 888-GET-IBMA or



Photo Caption: The International Bluegrass Music Association is pleased to announce the graduating class of Leadership Bluegrass 2009, pictured here at BMI in Nashville on March 12. Row 1: Larry Cordle; Row 2, L-R: Brandi Hart, Becky Johnson, Hannah Johnson, Joe Weed, Pete Wernick, Tom Mueller, Leah Ross, Barry Mazor, Sammy Shelor; Row 3: Gary Jolicoeur, Jim Van Cleve, John Abrams, Janet McGarry, Karl Kersey, Tom Thorpe, David Crow, Penni McDaniel, Lee Michael Demsey, Ronnie Reno; Row 4: Alan Tompkins, Dwight Worden, Tommy Sivert, C. Roger Moss, Danny Clark, David Preston (photo by Priscilla Warnock)

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