Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Foundation Board of Directors
Meet Our Board Members
Pat Alger - Chair
Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame member Pat Alger 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. He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2010 and in 2013 he was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.
Wayland Holyfield - Vice Chair
Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame member 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.
Mike Dye - Secretary
Mike Dye is COO of one of Nashville’s oldest businesses, Mercury Supply. Mercury, a successful member of the Nashville business market for over 70 years, provides customers throughout middle Tennessee with janitorial supplies and equipment. 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 BBB as Secretary.
Michael L. Vaden, CPA - Treasurer
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.
Steve Bogard has written nine number one country songs including George Strait's, "Carried Away” and “Carrying Your Love with Me," and Rascal Flatts' career breaker, "Prayin' For Daylight." Total sales of albums containing Bogard songs are over one hundred million units. Bogard has won twenty ASCAP or BMI awards with hits by artists as diverse as Reba, Tanya, Patty Loveless, Steve Wariner, Jack Ingram and Restless Heart. He has had two Grammy nominations for Best Country Song with Dierks Bentley and has produced nine major-label album projects for Arista, Virgin, Lyric Street and Sony. Recent cuts include two songs on Dustin Lynch’s #1 debut album and a critically acclaimed cut, “When The Credits Roll” on George Strait’s new #1 album. After successful early forays in the music markets of Memphis and Miami, working with legendary producers Jerry Wexler and Tom Dowd, Steve was drawn to Nashville, when in 1983, an eleven-year-old Bogard song, "Touch Me with Magic" became a top ten hit for Marty Robbins. Over ten years ago Steve was elected to the board of the Nashville Songwriter’s Association International and until this year was NSAI’s longest serving Board President. During that time he worked closely with the NMPA, DiMA, the RIAA, BMI and ASCAP on legislation affecting songwriters’ rights and income in the digital space, covering subscription services, interactive streaming, satellite radio, and future digital uses of music. Steve was the witness representing songwriters at the last Copyright Royalty Board rate setting proceeding. He is currently the Director of The Copyright Forum at Belmont University. Steve Bogard serves on the Board of NSAI, the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Foundation and MyWerx, voted one of Billboard Magazine’s top ten tech startups of 2010. A former Board Member of the CMA and the Academy of Country Music, Steve is a 1995 graduate of Leadership Music, served on ASCAP's Southern Writer's Advisory Board, and has hosted the ASCAP Song Seminar. He is a member of both the Producers and Engineers and the Composers Wing of NARAS, The Recording Academy.
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. She was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2009.
- Bio pending -
Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame member Dickey Lee began his music career in his hometown of Memphis in the late 1950s. After several Pop hits as an artist, Lee enjoyed his first hit as a songwriter in 1962 when George Jones topped the Country chart with “She Thinks I Still Care” (later a #1 Country hit for Elvis Presley, a #18 AC hit for Connie Francis and a #1 Country hit for Anne Murray, as well as a November 2013 release from Garth Brooks). Throughout the ’60s, Lee enjoyed more Pop hits of his own with songs he wrote, such as “I Saw Linda Yesterday,” as well as some he didn’t write, such as “Patches” and “Laurie (Strange Things Happen).” In 1969, he made the move to Nashville and by 1971 had signed with RCA Records, where he enjoyed success as a Country artist with hits from other writers (“Angels, Roses, and Rain,” “Never Ending Song of Love,” “Rocky” and “9,999,999 Tears”). In 1976, another Lee composition, “The Door Is Always Open” by Dave & Sugar, was a #1 Country hit and earned Grammy- and CMA- nominations for Country Song of the Year. From there, more co-written hits followed: “I'll Be Leaving Alone” (#1 for Charley Pride in 1977), “You're The First Time I've Thought About Leaving” (#1 for Reba McEntire in 1983), “I've Been Around Enough To Know” (#1 for John Schneider in 1984), “Let's Fall To Pieces Together” (#1 for George Strait in 1984), “In A Different Light” (#1 for Doug Stone in 1991) and “The Keeper Of The Stars” (#2 for Tracy Byrd in 1995 and named the Academy of Country Music’s Song of the Year). Lee was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1995.
Layng Martine, Jr.
Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame member Layng Martine, Jr. 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. He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2013.
Ken Paulson is the dean of the College of Mass Communication at Middle Tennessee State University. He is also 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.
Dr. Bethel “Bo” Thomas
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 opportunities for shared space at 34 Music Sq. East, including historic Columbia Studio A and the Quonset Hut. 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.
Troy Tomlinson is a 30-year publishing veteran who serves as President and CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing Nashville. Troy is in charge of day-to-day operations for the publishing company including contract negotiations, writer signings, copyright acquisitions and exploitation of copyrights. His writer/artists include: Taylor Swift, Kenny Chesney, Rascal Flatts, Miranda Lambert, Luke Bryan, Blake Shelton, The Band Perry, Chris Young, Thomas Rhett and Eric Church. His songwriter stable includes: Tom Douglas, Casey Beathard, Tony Martin, Dallas Davidson, Rhett Akins, and Hall of Famers Bobby Braddock, Bill Anderson, Bob DiPero and Curly Putman to name a few. Troy formerly served as Executive Vice President of Acuff Rose Publishing Company from 1988 until 2002. Prior to that, he served as Creative Manager at Multimedia Entertainment, Don King Music and Rick Hall/Fame Music. He currently serves on the boards of The Country Music Association as Past Chairman, Nashville Songwriters Foundation, The Country Music Hall Of Fame and The Country Music Foundation. He also serves as Chairman of the Tennessee Film, Entertainment and Music Commission and is member of the Music City Music Council.
John Van Mol
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.
David L. Maddox - Legal Counsel
David Maddox is an Assistant Professor at the Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business of Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee. An attorney licensed to practice law in Georgia (1972) and Tennessee (1975); Maddox has spent the last 35 years working in the general practice of entertainment law. He began teaching at the Belmont in 2009 and teaches law-related courses like Music Copyright Law and Music Industry Contract Law.
Robert K. Oermann - Historian
Robert K. Oermann, dubbed “the dean of Nashville’s entertainment journalists,” writes weekly columns for MusicRow magazine and has been published in more than 100 other national periodicals. His eight books to date include the award-winning Finding Her Voice and Behind the Grand Ole Opry Curtain. He has penned liner notes for more than 100 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 was a 2000-01 consultant to the National Endowment for the Arts. His projects include scripting the 2000 CBS television special celebrating the 75th anniversary of the 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 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. During the remainder of the decade, Robert scripted and hosted PBS pledge specials about Patsy Cline, Chet Atkins and Marty Robbins. He returned to PBS in 2011 as a co-host of Opry Memories. For the Ovation arts cable channel he scripted the mini-series Dolly Parton: Song By Song in 2012-13. 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.