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2017 Board of Directors Election

Initial Slate of Candidates

Dom Flemons

is the “American Songster,” pulling from traditions of old-time folk music to create new sounds. Having performed music professionally since 2005, he has traveled the world showcasing the rich history of American vernacular music. He has played at a variety of festivals spanning from the Newport Folk Festival, Bonnaroo and the Grand Ole Opry. Recently he received the honor of performing for the opening ceremonies for the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington DC. He is a multi-instrumentalist, researcher, record collector and advocate for the folk music.

Ballot Statement 

I would like to use the traditional forms of music to create a space for the different brands of folk music in the larger world of music. While I have made great accomplishments in my own career, it is not enough. The world needs traditional roots music more than ever.



Michael Kornfeld

is president of the Folk Music Society of Huntington (a nonprofit presenting organization on suburban Long Island, NY), vice president of Northeast Regional Folk Alliance (NERFA), and is serving his first term on the Folk Alliance International board. He’s editor & publisher of and an award-winning communications and PR strategist. He has coordinated NERFA One-Day Conferences, organizes the annual Huntington Folk Festival, and forged a heralded arts partnership between FMSH and LI’s Cinema Arts Centre. A past president of two professional associations, Michael is a frequent speaker and mentor on PR and communications topics at music conferences.

Ballot Statement

As a board member, I’ve brought new insights and perspectives and helped to broaden representation of FAI’s constituencies. I also serve on the NERFA board and view the regions as a vital part of FAI. In my view, all-volunteer, nonprofit presenting organizations are an important, though historically under-represented, constituent group.


Rob Oakie

is a founder and current Executive Director of Music PEI, one of the most proactive and innovative MIA's in Canada. He has a keen knowledge of not only the music industry but also a personal love for folk music of all types. Rob has been responsible for taking Music PEI from birth in 2008 to currently offering grant programs, educational and professional development programs, export development initiatives around the globe and multiple artist exchange programs. Under Rob's guidance, the number of exporting Music PEI members has grown by 400%. Rob has extensive experience serving on boards and non-profits.

Ballot Statement

I am honoured to submit my name to stand as a Director for an amazing organization, FAI. My work and experience with Music PEI, particularly export development, along with my past experience serving on various boards and knowledge of good governance are all reasons I would make a strong candidate.



Amy Reitnouer

is the co-founder and executive director of The Bluegrass Situation, a multi-platform brand that is the top roots music and culture website in the US. She produces and curates one-of-a-kind musical experiences, such as the BGS Superjam and Stage at Bonnaroo, workshops at Newport Folk and Old Settlers Music Fest, and jams at MerleFest, Winnipeg Folk, and many others. In addition to her work with BGS, Amy is the producer of the annual International Bluegrass Music Association awards show and has served on the FAI board for two years. She lives and works in Los Angeles.

Ballot Statement

Music — specifically roots music — is my life. I have loved immersing myself in the folk community through my past two years of service on the FAI board, and hope to continue my board work while representing our organization in the broader musical community and in the world.



John Smith

has helmed the independent roots label Free Dirt Records for over 10 years, having released albums from Pokey LaFarge, Utah Phillips, Anna & Elizabeth, The Wilders, and many more. Additionally, he is the owner and general manager of 12x12 Management & Label Services, where he handles a myriad of issues facing artists and labels today - from worldwide distribution to digital marketing to publishing deals and beyond. He spent 15 years at Smithsonian Folkways Recordings and has extensive experience working directly with artists in the USA and Canada, and with industry professionals worldwide.

Ballot Statement

I dig Folk Alliance International! I greatly value the FAI mission and community and would appreciate the opportunity to serve on the FAI Board of Directors. I believe my leadership experience and extensive work in many facets of the industry make me a qualified, versatile candidate.



Matt Smith

is the Managing Director of Passim, a non-profit arts organization in Cambridge, MA, and has been working there since 1995. He has also worked for Young/Hunter Management and was one of the founders of FolkWeb, an online CD realtor in the mid-late 90s. Matt has been on panels, juries and committees at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, Folk Alliance International, and the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance. He has worked as a tour manager, sound engineer, and stage manager/MC for various tours and festivals. Matt has been sitting on the board of FAI since 2014.

Ballot Statement

Folk Alliance International is one of the leading organizations in folk music today. It is an honor to serve on the Board of Directors and to be part of an amazing team of community leaders. I hope to continue my service to the organization and the community at large.



MarySue Twohy

is Program Director for three 24/7 channels on SiriusXM, including the folk channel, The Village. She has the honor of talking with great musicians on her "Village Folk Show" and interviews in 2016 include Judy Collins, Peter Yarrow, Billy Bragg & Joe Henry, Graham Nash, Emmylou Harris, Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, Shawn Colvin & Steve Earle, Avett Brothers, Sweet Honey in the Rock and more. MarySue has worked at SiriusXM for ten years and her background includes a decade of touring in support of three albums. She resides in Maryland with her husband and Basset Hound Sophie. 

Ballot Statement

I have served on the board for 6 years with extensive past work in advocacy, now focusing on regions. With advocacy work active under new leadership, I know look forward to work with our regions! Thank you for your time and consideration -- it is an honor. #FolkOn

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