Meet the Programs Team

The Music Forward team has done a lot of growing in 2023! We are thrilled to introduce our Programs Team – a group of passionate, dedicated individuals who are all set to take our mission to the next level! With their extensive expertise and innovative ideas, we’re more determined than ever to empower the next generation of music leaders. Each member of our Program Team brings a unique set of skills and experiences to the table, and together, they form a powerhouse of creativity and knowledge. From designing impactful workshops to curating exceptional events, they are committed to fostering growth and success in the music industry. Get to know our exceptional team members better and learn about the exciting initiatives they have in store.

Laura Clark
Director of Learning and Career Advancement

Favorite part of working at Music Forward: Leading an amazing team to empower young people to pursue their dreams of a career in the music industry.
Current Projects: While I oversee all of our pathways programming, currently I am very focused on standardizing exploration and preparation programs to align with pre-apprentice standards.
Favorite Song:  Impossible question to answer! I love music and have a favorite song for different moods, seasons, and experiences.
Most Memorable Concert: Ugh, also a tough question to answer with just one experience. Based on my love of the artist, I will say David Bowie at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, NY. 
Who inspires you?  My grandmother is my inspiration in life. She was the daughter of immigrants and had only a 6th grade education. Her determination to succeed, love of family and community, and her insane culinary and hosting skills helped me to see what strength of character and joy of life looks like. I adore her beyond words.
Advice for aspiring professionals: Be patient with yourself and don’t quit. Try, even when you are scared or afraid you might fail. When things don’t go as planned, make a new plan, and get on with it.
How does music move you? Music moves me to connect with myself and culture. It creates space for me to find common ground that might not otherwise exist.

Katrina Frye
Associate Director of Learning

Favorite part of working at Music Forward: Building new programs to give more students access to vital information
Current Projects: Paid Internships in Live Nation Venues in Boston and New York City
Favorite Song: “Sittin’ On Top of The World” – Burna Boy
Most Memorable Concert: Seeing Alanis at the Hollywood Bowl she played and sang for hours.
Who inspires you? Inspired by indie artists who are hustling. They are working tirelessly and without awards to share their art with us.
Advice for aspiring professionals: Keep bringing people into your process. There are more people then you think cheering you on.
How does music move you? Music moves me to see the world from someone’s perspective.

Oswaldo Navarro
Career Development Manager

Favorite part of working at Music Forward: Engaging industry partners and meeting students.
Current Projects:  Scholarships, internships, mentor programs and anything to do with career development
Favorite Song: Anything Beyonce
Most Memorable Concert: Beyonce- Coachella 2018
Who inspires you? My parents, family, and friends.
Advice for aspiring professionals: Never take no for an answer!
How does music move you? Listening to music is therapeutic. From those good to bad days.

Rick Williams
Artist Development Manager

Favorite part of working at Music Forward: Working with all of our amazing emerging artists!
Current Projects: Open Mic Fridays, Industry Sessions: Artist Readiness Series, All Access Fest
Favorite Song: “Billie Jean” – Michael Jackson
Most Memorable Concert: Seeing Earth, Wind & Fire in 4th Grade!
Who inspires you? Anyone who pursues their passion, because I love to see people do what they love.
Advice for aspiring professionals: Have thick skin!
How does music move you? Music inspires me to march to the beat of my own drum!

Ellen Felton
Learning Associate Manager

Favorite part of working at Music Forward: Being able to give back and educate the youth with programs that I wish I had growing up.
Current Projects: Music Forward x Citizens Boston Venue Internships, Music Forward x Northwell Jones Beach Internships, Preparing for fall programs in Inglewood and Lawndale school districts.
Favorite Song: “Believe” – Cher
Most Memorable Concert: My very first concert to see Diggy Simmons where my stepdad distracted security so my 2 friends and I could sneak to the closer seating. 
Who inspires you? Sylvia Rhone! She was the first African American woman to be a CEO and Chairman at EEG. It is hard to be a woman in the music industry, especially a black woman.
Advice for aspiring professionals: network, Network, NETWORK, N E T W O R K!
How does music move you? I love how it has the power the effect emotions. I could play a certain song to change my mood.

Nia Williams
Career Development Associate Manager

Favorite part of working at Music Forward:  Besides the joy of helping motivated young professionals get their gig in the music industry? Getting a chance to come into the office and hang out with my coworkers!
Current Projects: Creating pathways for young people to get career opportunities in the music industry. This includes our internship opportunities, scholarships, mentor programs, workshops, and more!
Favorite Song: “We’re an American Band” – Yo La Tengo
Most Memorable Concert: Seeing Kikagaku Moyo perform at Desert Daze in 2022. It was one of the final stops on their last North American tour – and the energy was palpable! I still get chills thinking about it.
Who inspires you? My 7 and 12-year-old nieces. They are so confident and funny, I want to be like them when I grow up.
Advice for aspiring professionals: Never give up! If you’re not where you want to be, take small steps every day to get there. 
How does music move you? I’ve connected with some of my favorite people in my life through our mutual love of music, and I think it’s so cool music has the power to bring people together like that!

Cameron Haywood
Artist Development Coordinator

Favorite part of working at Music Forward: My favorite part of working at Music Forward is watching the youth in our programs become inspired by all of the opportunities that exist within the music industry
Current Projects: Virtual All Access Fest, Artist Development Industry Sessions, Open Mic Friday, LGBTQ+ Emerging Artist Award
Favorite Song: “Hold On” – The Internet
Most Memorable Concert: Ravyn Lenae at The El Rey
Who inspires you? I’m inspired by my family and how much we all support each other
Advice for aspiring professionals: Have confidence in the skills that you have and can contribute to a team. 
How does music move you? I am constantly listening to music. I think it is a universal language that connects us all through human experience.

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