Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Foundation Board of Directors
Meet Our Board Members
Pat Alger - Chairman - was born in Long Island City, N.Y., but was raised in his mother’s birthplace of LaGrange, Ga. While in college in the ’60s, Pat started writing songs and performing at Atlanta folk clubs. Moving to Woodstock, N.Y., in the ’70s, he made three albums with the Woodstock Mountain Revue for Rounder Records and a duet album with guitarist Artie Traum. Pat had his first hit with Folk-Pop artist Livingston Taylor (“First Time Love”) in 1980, then decided to move to Nashville. Slowly, established artists like Mickey Gilley, Dolly Parton, Brenda Lee and the Everly Brothers began to record his material, followed by new artists like Kathy Mattea (“Goin’ Gone” and “She Came From Fort Worth”), Nanci Griffith (“Lone Star State Of Mind”) and Hal Ketchum (“Small Town Saturday Night”). Pat’s songwriting collaborations with Garth Brooks yielded four #1 records for him (“The Thunder Rolls,” “Unanswered Prayers,” “What She’s Doing Now” and “That Summer”), as well as the Trisha Yearwood hit “Like We Never Had A Broken Heart.” In 1991, Pat was named NSAI Songwriter of the Year. In 1992, he was ASCAP’s Country Songwriter of the Year.
Ken Paulson - Vice Chairman - is president and chief executive officer/First Amendment Center. Previously, Paulson served as editor and senior vice president/news of USA Today and USATODAY.com. He is now a columnist on USA Today’s board of contributors, writing about First Amendment issues. For the past 32 years, Paulson has drawn on his background as both a journalist and lawyer, serving as the editor or managing editor of newspapers in five different states and as the executive director of the First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University. He was on the team of journalists who founded USA Today in 1982 before moving on to manage newsrooms in Westchester County, N.Y., Green Bay, Wis., Bridgewater, N.J. and at Florida Today in Brevard County, Fla. Paulson is also the founder of 1 for All, an unprecedented national campaign on behalf of the First Amendment, launched on July 1, 2010, with support from more than 1,100 news, arts and religious organizations. Paulson also was the host of the Emmy-honored television program "Speaking Freely", seen in more than 60 PBS markets nationwide over five seasons, and the author of "Freedom Sings", a multimedia stage show celebrating the First Amendment that continues to tour the nation’s campuses. He was an early advocate of making newspaper content available online, launching online newspapers in both Florida and New York in 1993. For the past 12 years, Paulson has been a regular guest lecturer at the American Press Institute, speaking to more than 5,000 journalists about First Amendment issues. He recently was honored with the API Lifetime Service Award. Paulson has been elected to the leadership of the American Society of News Editors and will be president of ASNE in 2011. In 2007, he was named fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists, "the highest honor SPJ bestows upon a journalist for extraordinary contributions to the profession." He is a graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law and the University of Missouri School of Journalism. He also has served as an adjunct professor at Vanderbilt University Law School and is a member of both the Illinois and Florida bars.
Mike Dye -Treasurer & Finance Chair - is Managing Partner of GroupXcel, a single-source solution providing combined facility services (janitorial, HVAC, electrical, landscaping, floral & plant care) for clients in five southeastern states. During his previous tenure at American Airlines, Mike was responsible for the company's sales and marketing in southeastern U.S.A.In this capacity, he earned numerous honors for outstanding sales and customer service and was responsible for establishing American Airlines as a founding (and continuing) sponsor of Tin Pin South, the annual Nashville-based celebration of songwriters. Mike’s love of and support for songwriters — combined with his keen sense of business — have become key assets to the Nashville Songwriters Foundation. He also serves on several other non-profit boards, including the Nashville Symphony.
Layng Martine, Jr. - Secretary - arrived in Nashville in 1972 from Connecticut. Learning his craft from publisher Ray Stevens, Layng’s first major success, “Rub It In” by Billy “Crash” Craddock, reached #1 Country and #16 Pop in 1974 (and has since become the long-running TV commercial “Plug It In”). In 1977, Layng's “Way Down” became a gold single for Elvis Presley and was at #1 on the day that Elvis died. Layng’s “The Greatest Man I Never Knew” (with Richard Leigh) was #1 and Grammy-nominated in 1992 and capped a string of Reba McEntire singles that had begun with her very first in 1976 and included “I Don’t Think Love Ought To Be That Way” (with Richard Mainegra; #13 in 1981). His “Should I Do It” reached #7 Pop for the Pointer Sisters in 1982, and Layng has had #1 Pop singles in both England and France, among other countries. The '90s also brought Country hits such as “I Was Blown Away” by Pam Tillis (#10 in 1995) and “I Wanna Go Too Far” (with Kent Robbins) by Trisha Yearwood in 1996. Layng also serves on the NSAI Board of Directors.
Troy Tomlinson - Board Nominating Committee Chairman - has been in the publishing business for more than 20 years. He began his career at Multimedia Entertainment in 1983 as Professional Manager of the Nashville division. He was Creative Manager of Don King Music and Rick Hall Music for three years. In 1988, Troy joined Acuff Rose as Creative Manager. In 1993, he was promoted to director and in 1996 was made Vice President of the Creative Department. Troy was made Executive Vice President of Acuff Rose in 1999. Sony/ATV Music Publishing acquired Acuff Rose in 2002, and Troy was hired as Vice President Creative. In December 2005, he was promoted to President and Chief Executive Officer.
Robert K. Oermann - Historian, Hall of Fame Nominating Committee Chairman and Design & Content Committee Chairman -“the dean of Nashville’s entertainment journalists,” writes bi-weekly columns for Music Row magazine and has been published in more than 100 other national periodicals. His seven books to date include the award-winning Finding Her Voice and A Century of Country. He has penned liner notes for more than 90 albums and boxed-set productions. He has scripted and/or directed television specials and documentaries for CMT, CBS, the BBC, TBS, TNN and others. And he appears frequently on-camera as a commentator on VH-1, A&E, CMT and the BBC. Robert’s recent projects include scripting the 2000 CBS television special celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Grand Ole Opry, penning the liner notes for the Grammy-winning O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack album in 2001 and cowriting the autobiography of 2002 Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame inductee Brenda Lee. He was a judge on the 2003 USA Network series Nashville Star. In 2004 he directed the DVD Music Business 101, wrote the PBS special celebrating the 50th anniversary of George Jones and was the music supervisor and script writer for the United Stations radio series Honest Country, narrated by Willie Nelson. Robert’s projects for 2005 include liner notes for albums by Emmylou Harris, Ray Charles, Eddy Arnold, New Grass Revival and Alabama, an audio presentation on the history of country music for the CMA and Patsy Cline: Sweet Dreams Still, a PBS TV special he wrote and hosted. Robert was a 2000-01 consultant to the National Endowment for the Arts. He serves on the boards of Leadership Music, and the Nashville Songwriters Foundation. He is the chairman of the country committee for the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles and serves on the Hall of Fame and awards committees for the CMA. His honors include receiving the 2000 President’s Award from the Recording Academy and winning the 1999 and 2001 Nashville Scene Reader’s Poll as Music City’s favorite feature writer. Oermann also won a 1996 Nashville Music Award, the 1994 ASCAP Deems Taylor Award and the 1988 CMA Media Achievement Award. He is a 1989 graduate of Leadership Music and a 2003 graduate of Leadership Nashville.Michael L. Vaden, CPA - is the Director of Decosimo/Vaden, the entertainment and sports business practice of the Decosimo CPA Firm. For nearly 35 years, Mike has applied his expertise in royalty accounting, tax planning, and financial management to all areas of the entertainment industry. Mike’s specialized services to music professionals include concert tour accounting, royalty examinations, tax planning and compliance, investment analysis, business management assistance, and catalog valuation. Mike is an alumnus of Leadership Music and a member of many professional organizations, including the Nashville Entertainment Association, Nashville Songwriters Association International, the American Institute of CPAs and the Tennessee Society of CPAs. He is an U.S. Army veteran and a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University. He also serves on the boards of Rocketown and Sound & Speed.
David L. Maddox - Legal Counsel - has been formally engaged in the entertainment industry for more than 25 years, but his love for music began at the age of four when he first began singing in church choirs. A native of Atlanta, he received his BA degree in political science from North Georgia College in 1969 as a Cum Laude graduate and his JD degree from the University of Georgia School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in both Georgia (1972) and Tennessee (1975). After serving as assistant to the President of Thomas Nelson Publishers from 1972 to 1975, David followed his heart to the music industry beginning in 1975. In 1976 David was named the Executive Secretary of the Nashville Local of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) and held the same post with the Screen Actors Guild from 1976 to 1986. In 1984, he and Rush Hicks formed the law firm of Maddox & Hicks and he practiced on a part-time basis for the next two years. In 1986 he left AFTRA and SAG to practice full time. His law practice has consisted primarily of entertainment law from then until the present. In 1995, David formed his present firm, David L. Maddox & Associates, P.C., where he practices today. In 1999 he entered into an of counsel relationship with Frascogna Courtney, PLLC, in which he represents Frascogna Courtney, PLLC clients in Tennessee and vice versa.
Steve Bogard's music career began at age 12 fronting his first band in Tampa, Fla. By the age of 19, Steve had a top 20 R&B hit on James Carr, "Freedom Train," and two cuts on A&M Records' soulful star Rita Coolidge. While in Memphis, Steve played guitar, sang background and toured extensively with both Charlie Rich and Jerry Lee Lewis. He was drawn to Nashville in 1981 when an 11-year-old song of his -- "Touch Me With Magic" -- became a Top 10 hit for Marty Robbins. To date, Steve has eight #1 Country songs among 18 ASCAP- and BMI-award winners, including George Strait's "Carried Away” and “Carrying Your Love With Me," Rascal Flatts' career-breaking "Prayin' For Daylight," Jack Ingram's “Wherever You Are” and Dierks Bentley’s “Every Mile A Memory,” a 2007 Grammy nominee for Country Song of the Year. Steve's co-written second single on Dierks is the title cut “Long Trip Alone.” Additional songwriting credits for Steve include Clay Walker's "If You Ever Feel Like Lovin' Me Again," BlackHawk's "There You Have It," Tanya Tucker's "Hangin' In," Steve Wariner's "A Woman Loves," Patty Loveless' "Jealous Bone," Eddy Raven's "Til You Cry," Reba McEntire's "New Fool At An Old Game" and Lee Greenwood's "Mornin' Ride." Steve also has cuts by Tim McGraw, Kenny Chesney, Restless Heart, Lonestar, Alabama, The Oak Ridge Boys and Diamond Rio.
Kye Fleming - Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame member, Kye Fleming started writing songs at 14 and spent her early 20s on the Folk-music circuit performing original material. In 1977, she signed as a staff writer with Pi-Gem Music, where she and another young songwriter, Dennis Morgan, started collaborating. The catalog they created reads like a Country music greatest hits package of the '70s and '80s: "Years," "Sleeping Single In A Double Bed" and "I Was Country When Country Wasn't Cool" (Barbara Mandrell) "Smoky Mountain Rain" and "I Wouldn't Have Missed It For The World" (Ronnie Milsap), "Roll On Mississippi" (Charley Pride), as well as BMI's 1983 Country Song of the Year "Nobody" (Sylvia). Fleming was NSAI Songwriter of the Year in 1981 & 1982. She was BMI Country Songwriter of the Year in 1980, 1982 & 1983. She was BMI Pop Songwriter of the Year in 1981 & 1982. In 1987, her "Give Me Wings" (Michael Johnson) was named Billboard's Country Song of the Year. With more than 45 BMI awards - 10 of them earning Million-Air status - she is one of the most-awarded songwriters in Country music history.
Becky Judd - a native of Nashville, Tennessee, is Executive Assistant to Mike Curb of Curb Records. She began her career with Curb in January of 1994 after working as a legal assistant for Neal & Harwell and other local law firms for 15 years. She works closely with the Mike Curb Family Foundation which supports music education and works to restore historic music industry locations. These include Elvis Presley's former home in Memphis, RCA Studio B and the building located at 34 Music Square East in Nashville, former home of the Columbia Studio A and the Quonset Hut, and the future home of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame.
Dr. Bethel “Bo” Thomas Ph.D is Vice President for University Advancement at Belmont University, one of the nation’s premier music, entertainment and music business universities. Coming to Nashville and Belmont in 2003, Bo quickly became engaged with the music industry when asked by the Nashville Chamber of Commerce to be a member of the newly formed Music Association Task Force. Through this Task Force, Bo and Belmont led the way in successfully completing the first-ever Music Economic Impact Study showing an impact of 6.4 billion dollars on the Nashville community. Bo was instrumental in helping create the alliance between Belmont, the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Foundation, and the Nashville Songwriters Association that led to the new Songwriting Major in Belmont’s Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business, as well as to the space that will house the new Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. An alumnus of Leadership Music and Leadership Nashville, he has co-chaired the Orchestra Nashville Board, served as First-Vice Chair of the Board of Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee, and is active in the Nashville Downtown Rotary Club. Bo co-authored the book, “Real Dream Teams”, with Belmont President Bob Fisher, and both lived their best dream team experience in 2008 when Belmont hosted Tennessee’s first-ever Town Hall Presidential Debate. Bo grew up in Smithville, Tennessee, attended the University of Tennessee and received his Ph.D from Ohio University. A former university professor, he led his own management consulting firm in Little Rock, Arkansas, prior to coming to Belmont.
Wayland Holyfield - is a native of Little Rock, Ark., where he attended public schools and completed his formal education with a marketing degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. He moved to Nashville in 1972 and had his first # 1 song, "Rednecks, White Socks And Blue Ribbon Beer" in 1973. Since then Wayland has been honored with 37 ASCAP and BMI awards and has written more than 40 Top 10 hits, including 14 # 1 songs. "Could I Have This Dance," "Some Broken Hearts Never Mend," "Till the Rivers All Run Dry," "Only Here For A Little While" and "Meanwhile" are but a few of his almost-four decades of hits. He also wrote "Arkansas You Run Deep In Me," adopted in 1987 as the official state song of Arkansas. Long active as an advocate for songwriters' rights, Wayland was the first Nashville-based writer to be elected to the ASCAP Board of Directors. Wayland has also served as President of the NSAI and as Chairman of the NSF. He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1992.
John Van Mol - is CEO of Dye, Van Mol & Lawrence, a public relations agency that has been serving regional and national clients since 1980. He is a Knoxville, Tenn., native and journalism graduate of the University of Tennessee. His communications career includes a tour of duty in Vietnam as a public affairs officer for the U.S. Army, experience as both writer and editor for The Associated Press, and director of PR for a major utility. Specialties include issues and crisis management, media relations and media skills training. An associate member of NSAI, John currently serves on the boards and is past chairman of the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Goodwill Industries, and Nashville's Downtown Partnership. He is also a trustee of Cumberland University and on the board of PENCIL Foundation.