After serving on the Academy of Country Music Board of Directors for 14 years, Pete Fisher took the helm of the Academy of Country Music as Chief Executive Officer in January 2017, assuming responsibility for the day-to-day management of all Academy business.
Prior to joining the Academy, Fisher was Vice President, General Manager of the Grand Ole Opry, a post he held for 17 years, overseeing all activities of the world’s longest-running radio show and the historic 4,400 seat venue. During his tenure there, he produced weekly Opry shows and special projects, transformed the Opry show to enjoy record attendance and superstar artist participation, and was credited with proactive talent booking, upgrading Opry production values, growing distribution of the Opry radio programming domestically and internationally, and serving as Executive Producer on more than 300 television episodes and specials, including Grand Ole Opry 75th Anniversary (CBS), Grand Ole Opry, Live at Carnegie Hall (GAC & DVD), Country Comes Home (GAC), Opry Live (TNN, CMT & GAC), Noteworthy at the Opry (GAC) as well as the GRAMMY-nominated concert film, American Saturday Night – Live From The Grand Ole Opry (DigiNext/Carmike), among others.
Fisher’s early experience includes artist management with Fisher Raines Entertainment and music publishing at WarnerSongs, Inc. He currently serves on the boards for the Academy of Country Music, ACM Lifting Lives, MusiCares, the Opry Trust Fund, Chair of the Board of Trust for the College of Media and Entertainment at his alma mater, Middle Tennessee State University, and the advisory board for Belmont University’s Curb College of Entertainment & Music Business.
He is active with various other charitable organization such as, City of Hope, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society as well as the Haitian relief organizations, J/P HRO and Music Heals International. In 2015, he was recognized as an American Master by the Berklee College of Music, an Award whose recipients include Eddie Bayers, T Bone Burnett, Jim Ed Norman, David Rawlings, Gillian Welch. In 2013, he received the Inspiration Award at Inspire Nashville. In 2004, he was recognized as a Distinguished Alumnus from his alma mater, Middle Tennessee State University.
He and his wife, Hope, have two sons, Sean (28) and Chris (21). They relocated from Brentwood, Tenn., to to Los Angeles in January.
SVP, Creative & Content
Lisa Lee drew on her experience as a TV journalist and producer to help establish and grow an in-house creative and video production department for the Academy in 2007. Currently serving as Senior Vice President of Creative and Content Production, Lee is the Academy’s lead staff producer and oversees all video production as well as the design, creation and editing of ACM logos, digital and printed materials—including ACM Tempo magazine, the ACM Awards program book, A-List eblasts and both the ACM and ACM Lifting Lives websites. Lee also serves as a liaison with CBS creative departments and CBS.com for promos and creative surrounding the annual ACM Awards. Lee was also named producer of the live ACM Honors event, staged annually at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.
Before joining the Academy staff, Lee got her start in the country music industry as an entertainment journalist, spending 10 years in Nashville as an on-air reporter for CMT, CMT.com, country.com and the former TNN, reporting on events across the United States and in England, Japan, Canada and Switzerland. She moved to Los Angeles in 2004 as the Hollywood correspondent and West Coast news bureau chief for the weekly show CMT Insider, covering music, movies and television.
Lee is a Cabot, Arkansas, native and holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and English from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. She also earned a master's degree in broadcast journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism in Chicago. Lee recently authored the book This Is Country: A Backstage Pass to the Academy of Country Music Awards, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of the ACM Awards. The book was published by Insight Editions and is available nationwide.
Erick Long joined the Academy of Country Music in 2009 after many years in the events industry. He currently manages Operations & Events at the Academy including several components of the Academy of Country Music Awards, ACM Party for a Cause Festival as well as ACM Honors. Long oversees the general operations of the ACM, event production, red carpet, talent logistics, sponsor fulfillment, catering, board meetings, security, transportation, the All-Star Jam (official after party), IT, as well as the internship and volunteer programs.
Prior to joining the Academy, Long spent more than six years in special events at Universal Studios Hollywood where he managed large-scale events including the MTV Movie Awards After Party, the Tahitian Noni International Conference, Lance Armstrong's Tour of Hope, and New Year's Eve events, among others. Before Universal, Long spent more than 10 years in event production and operations with the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games, Pallotta TeamWorks - Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, Up with People as well as independent contracts with the Grammys, Latin Grammys, and the Inland Valley Humane Society. A Tennessee native, Long graduated from Emory & Henry College in Virginia. He has lived in Los Angeles since 2000.
Brooke Primero joined the Academy from BNC (now PMK-BNC), a leading entertainment PR and marketing firm, where she led the Special Events team - including working with the Academy for more than four years. Her experience in event marketing and media solutions resulted in highly successful campaigns during her nine years at the agency for clients including T-Mobile, General Motors, Screen Actors Guild, The Miss America Pageant, GUESS?, Red Bull, 7th on Sixth and more, and for magazine clients including Vanity Fair, People, Us Weekly, Sports Illustrated, etc. Prior to that with Paramount Pictures, she handled talent relations and was a key contributor to developing media and promotional events--ranging from film premieres, Hollywood Walk of Fame ceremonies and Oscar parties--for film launches including Mission Impossible, Titanic, First Wives' Club, Face/Off and more. Primero began her career as a journalist, working for Petersen Publishing and Disney Magazine Publishing, among others.
SVP, Finance & Operations
Torii joined the Academy from Anschutz Entertainment Group, where he solidified his reputation as a hands-on, strategic CFO, capable of providing financial and operational direction across organizations. During his nearly decade-long tenure as Vice President of Finance at AEG and Chief Financial Officer of AEG Sports, Torii oversaw all finance of sports entities including Amgen Tour of California, Houston Dynamo, Los Angeles Galaxy, Los Angeles Kings, and many other marquee brands. In addition, he led finance activities for non-sports entities such as AXS TV, JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton at LA Live, Ritz-Carlton condominiums at LA Live, ticketing platforms for AXS.com and Examiner.com, among others.
Prior to AEG, Torii developed and implemented financial strategies at the operational level as Interim Chief Financial Officer at AVP Pro Beach Volleyball Tour. During his six years there, he was responsible for finance and accounting for the public company. A leader of finance and accounting, Torii’s career stops include 20th Century Fox, Warner Bros./Turner Feature Animation and The Jim Henson Company.
In his role as Senior Vice President, Finance & Operations, Torii will oversee all aspects of the Academy’s finance, planning, analysis, operations and human resources functions.
Nick Di Fruscia
VP, Awards & Membership
Regarded as a highly respected executive in the music community, Di Fruscia joined the Academy's membership team from The Recording Academy, where he was Director, Awards and served nearly a decade-long tenure overseeing the pop and country categories for The GRAMMY Awards.
Born in Los Angeles and raised in Las Vegas, Di Fruscia returned to Southern California to attend San Diego State University, where he studied Business Administration. He moved to Los Angeles in 2000 where he began his music business career at Chalkboard Music, Inc., a boutique publishing and management company. As Creative Director and Manager, Di Fruscia worked on a variety of projects with artists including Cher, Donna Summer, Elton John, Diane Warren, and many more.
Di Fruscia's career included his own consultancy, 33 Music Consulting, where he advised and managed artists, producers and television/film composers, and a stop as Director of Music Licensing at the popular online social giant MySpace.
In his new role as Vice President, Awards & Membership, Di Fruscia will oversee all Awards voting and processes, and lead membership initiatives, while also contributing to the Academy's artist and industry relations efforts both in Nashville and on the West Coast.
Di Fruscia is a member of the Academy of Country Music, the Association of Independent Music Publishers (AIMP), The Recording Academy, The GRAMMY Museum, the Country Music Association and the Songwriters' Hall of Fame.
Alexa Fasheh first joined the Academy staff as Director of Finance in 2011. A Los Angeles native, Fasheh graduated from Loyola Marymount University in 2000 with a Bachelor of Science in accounting. She then went on to work as an accountant for a variety of CPA firms, including the Haber Corporation where she spent 5 years as the ACM's outside accountant before joining the ACM staff full-time.
In her role as Director of Finance, Fasheh oversees the Academy's finances and benefits packages, as well as credentials for the ACM Awards. She reports to ACM EVP Tiffany Moon.
Videographer/Editor, Creative & Content
Brandon Campbell has joined the Academy's Creative & Content Production team as Videographer/Editor. Atlanta-born and Tennessee-raised, Campbell graduated from Middle Tennessee State University where he studied Electronic Media Communications with a focus on single camera production.
Prior to joining the ACM's Los Angeles-based staff, Campbell spent six years freelancing in Nashville where he worked with various awards shows and artists—including Keith Urban, Mutemath and many more—before eventually joining Hunter Hayes' team full time for three years. In 2014, Campbell took part in Hayes’ Guinness World Record for “Most Live Concerts Played in 24 Hours in Different Cities” by staying awake for a total of 44 hours to document all 10 shows in 10 different cities.
Campbell will report to Lisa Lee, Senior Vice President, Creative & Content Production.
Director, Administration & Operations
Atlanta-born and Chicago-raised, Moore attended Marquette University in Milwaukee, where he graduated with a degree in Broadcasting and Electronic Communications. Moore interned and then was hired on at WMIL-FM country radio in Milwaukee in in 2009, before moving to Los Angeles to join the Academy in 2011.
In his current role as Director, Administration and Operations, he directs the overall administration of the ACM office with focus on operations, ticketing, Board of Directors communication, aspects of the professional membership, and is currently the interim manager of ACM Lifting Lives. He serves as the Secretary of both the ACM Board of Directors as well as the ACM Lifting Lives Board of Directors.
Moore is a SOLID alumnus, class of 2013.
Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships
California born and raised, Jen Heaton joins the Academy of Country Music in a newly created role as Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships, in the Academy’s Los Angeles office.
Heaton attended the University of Arizona, graduating with degrees in communications and business, and remained in Arizona and joined the Arizona Diamondbacks’ Sales Department in 2010 to assist with their season tickets, group events and hospitality. She was quickly promoted to an account executive, overseeing more than 500 season ticket holders and their day-to-day ticket usage in addition to coordinating annual events for season ticket holders. In 2013, Heaton transitioned to the role of account service executive in Corporate Partnerships, where she managed corporate partners of the Arizona Diamondbacks, overseeing contracts and executing activations with the team.
As the Academy’s Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships, she is responsible for planning and executing the ACM and ACM Lifting Lives® partners programs—including identifying, cultivating, and developing new sponsors across industries and developing a multi-year partnership strategy. She reports to Erick Long, Senior Vice President, Events.
Moldovan joined the Academy fresh off a four-year stint at the nationally syndicated radio show The Big Time with Whitney Allen, where she worked as an assistant producer and fill-in co-host while simultaneously developing the show?€™s social media marketing strategy. Her work there ultimately lead to the creation of a social media staff position, which Moldovan undertook in addition to her other roles before moving to the Academy?€™s marketing team in 2015.
In her expanded role, Moldovan will execute all Academy radio promotions and lead on Academy press materials, overseeing ACM Lifting Lives Music Camp publicity, and more. She reports to Brooke Primero, Senior Vice President, Marketing.
Manager, Creative & Content
A California native, Payne attended UCLA where she majored in communication studies and minored in Spanish. She first joined the ACM team in 2014 as an intern for the Academy's charitable arm, ACM Lifting Lives, before continuing on full-time as an assistant in the Creative & Content Production and PR & Marketing departments, and eventually as the Coordinator for the Creative & Content Production department.
Prior to joining the Academy, Payne interned with Music for Relief, a non-profit organization started by Linkin Park, and also worked as an English teacher throughout various cities in China and Inner Mongolia. In her current role as Manager, Payne oversees the day-to-day management of the Academy?€™s website properties, photo archives, A-List eblasts and ACM Tempo magazine. She also acts as a field producer for the Academy?€™s in-house video content and helps oversee both the digital and print creative content distributed by the Academy, among other duties.
Payne reports to Lisa Lee, SVP, Creative & Content.
A Massachusetts native, Lanni Gagnon joins the Academy of Country Music team as Coordinator of the Events department.
Gagnon attended New York’s Ithaca College where she studied communication management and design. She interned with the Academy’s Event & Operations team for the 50th Annual ACM Awards, and after graduating in May 2015 relocated to Los Angeles for stints with Intern Queen, Inc., RGLive Events and George P. Johnson Experiential Marketing. During that time, she also freelanced with the ACM Events team on-site for the past two ACM Awards in Las Vegas.
In her role as a coordinator, Gagnon will be responsible for various logistical and operational elements of the ACM Awards and ACM Party for a Cause Events – including event production, red carpet, food and beverage, transportation, signage, security, event décor and partnership fulfillment. She reports to Erick Long, Senior Vice President, Events.
Originally from Petaluma, Calif., Stessman spent the last four years on the East Coast where she studied broadcast and digital journalism at Syracuse University. While in school, Stessman kept busy with multiple internships at NBC's Affiliate Marketing Department, The Meredith Vieira Show and The TODAY Show, as well as the Academy of Country Music--where she worked with the Operations & Events team for the Academy's historic 50th Anniversary in Texas.
Although newly transplanted to Los Angeles, Stessman currently commutes to the Bay Area for all Oakland Raiders home games--despite being a Denver Broncos fan--in order to work on their game-day corporate partnerships team.
Stessman reports to Erick Long, SVP, Events.
Coordinator, Awards & Membership
Originally from Kansas City, Carrie Tekautz joins the Academy of Country Music’s team as Coordinator of the Awards & Membership department.
Tekautz attended Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, where she graduated with a degree in music business. After interning at Universal Music Publishing Group, Sony Music Nashville, Red Light Management and the Country Music Association, Tekautz began working full-time for CMA in 2013 within the Membership & Balloting department. In 2015, Tekautz joined the Ryman Auditorium and Grand Ole Opry team as assistant, a role she held for nearly two years before moving to Los Angeles.
In her role as Coordinator, Awards & Membership, she will help maintain the membership database, recruit new ACM professional members and help coordinate the ACM Awards voting process. She reports to Nick Di Fruscia, Vice President, Awards & Membership.
Assistant, Marketing and Creative & Content
Chicago-born and Las Vegas-raised, Bridget Cirone joins the Academy of Country Music’s Los Angeles team, stepping in as Assistant for both the Marketing and Creative & Content departments.
Cirone graduated from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where she studied public relations and digital media and worked for both the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and WISN 12 News. After graduating, Cirone moved back to Las Vegas where she spent a year and a half working at Wicked Creative, an entertainment, hospitality and lifestyle public relations firm. Cirone was a volunteer for the ACM Awards and ACM Party for a Cause® events in 2017.
She will assist the marketing and creative & content teams with all needs, including administrative and support tasks, and will serve as a production assistant for all major events, among other duties. She reports dually to Lisa Lee, Senior Vice President, Creative & Content and Brooke Primero, Senior Vice President, Marketing.
Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Zolezzi moved to California to begin her career as a caterer and special events coordinator in the movie and television industry. She moved into the corporate world 16 years ago, and for eight years served as the executive assistant to the CFO of Guitar Center.