In our latest roundup, we present eight rising professionals from various parts of the biz whose dedication and effort make their superiors look good. 

Lucky for them, this feature—and $2m—will get them a commemorative NFT.

Jessica Kelm Núñez
VP of Digital Marketing, Artist Partner Group

After four years, Núñez is still pinching herself to make sure working under APG CEO Mike Caren and EVP Elyse Rogers isn’t just a dream. She joined the company as Senior Director of Pop Marketing, collaborating with artists like Charlie Puth, Ava Max and Alec Benjamin, but last year was upped to VP. She’s thrilled to be playing an executive role in nurturing the newly independent enterprise’s emerging creators. Also a textile artist, Núñez uses fabric and fiber to express herself creatively. We’re still learning how to tie our shoes.

George Clark III
Director, Marketing and A&R, RCA

Among Clark’s claims to fame: identifying a sample whose source Madlib couldn’t recall, which helped clear a record for 2019’s Bandana, the producer’s second album with rapper Freddie Gibbs. Clark co-produced Nebu Kiniza’s “Patience,” featuring Young Nudy, for this year’s Back2Lyfe EP, his first official RCA-related production credit. Up next: new albums from Flo Milli and Maxo Kream, plus projects with Nardo Wick, YungManny, Gashi and Healy. When he was in high school, Clark designed Miguel’s first custom MySpace page. Alas, we’d already been banned from the platform by then.

Kat MacLean-Daley
Director, Music Sampling and Business Development, UMPG

MacLean-Daley contributed to music history when she cleared the Nine Inch Nails sample anchoring Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road,” which set the record for longest-running #1 (19 weeks). In 2019, she had the pleasure of seeing Galantis debut “Faith,” the first time she’d witnessed a performance of a song she’d cleared. In 2021, she made sure the interpolations on Drake’s Certified Lover Boy and Kanye West’s Donda (plus work by Doja Cat and Megan Thee Stallion) were kosher. By all accounts, MacLean-Daley is an excellent cook. We wouldn’t know.

Jaime Olaez
Manager, Digital Marketing, YM&U 

Olaez once collaborated on skits with Christina Applegate, Kristin Bell, Kathryn Hahn and Mila Kunis to promote the film Bad Moms, a heady experience for this self-described class clown. Since landing at YM&U in 2020, he’s all about Steve Aoki, helping the EDM superstar grow his TikTok fanbase to 1.5m and his Instagram constituency by 600k, among countless other digital-marketing feats. Olaez is an entrepreneur, too, co-head of a silent-disco/events company. We couldn’t get past the velvet rope, which was just as well—it sounded pretty dead in there.

Chelsea Fodero
Artist Manager, SB Projects

Longtime NYC resident Fodero was in an “Empire State of Mind” when she assisted Alicia Keys on a Times Square concert takeover supporting 2016’s HERE, which transpired before the same steps seen in Keys’ music video with Jay-Z, who was a surprise guest. “There’s no greater feeling than the energy of a live show,” she says. Today Fodero’s managing 2021 Grammy Producer of the Year Andrew Watt (Justin Bieber, Dua Lipa, Elton John). She’s visited five continents and 47 U.S. states, mostly on tour. Wonder why she hasn’t visited us

Matt Herzfeld
Senior Director, Contemporary A&R & Catalog Acquisition, Primary Wave

Prior to closing a 20% royalty stake in Rihanna’s first seven albums at PW, Herzfeld worked at the French Embassy in New York. He’s done $80m+ in catalog deals this year, including for Dan Wilson (co-writer of Adele’s “Someone Like You”) and Steve Kipner (Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical,” Christina Aguilera’s “Genie in a Bottle”). He was also behind Steve Aoki’s reworking of Allee WillisKarate Kid theme, performed with Travis Barker on the 2020 MTV Movie & TV Awards. Herzfeld majored in jazz guitar. We’re thinking of going to college someday.

Katie Baloian

Co-Head, Marketing, AWAL

Five years into working with twenty one pilots, Baloian was thrilled to celebrate with them at the 2017 Grammys when they accepted their trophy (memorably taking off their pants before taking the stage, a vow they’d made while sitting around in their underwear watching the show in years past). This year she’s shared in the success of girl in red, Jungle and Little Simz. A trusted source for travel and restaurant recommendations the world over, Baloian knows better than to subject herself to T&E with the likes of us.

Matthew Limones
Director, Marketing, Universal Music Latino/Capitol Latin

This former SoundExchange exec identified Bad Bunny, Maluma and Karol G early on and brought them into the fold. Ensuring that established Latin acts received their fair share of the organization’s $1b 2018 payout, he got Daddy Yankee, Enrique Iglesias and Thalia a 102% increase in combined payments. On the label side, he’s launched Luis Fonsi and Myke Towers’ “Besame” and Feid’s Inter Shibuya-La Mafia, home to Colombian #1 “Si Tu Supieras.” Limones has a degree in biology and chemistry. We suspect he’ll have no chemistry with our biology.


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