(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Don Ienner has added the title of CEO to his existing responsibilities as President of Sony Music Label Group, U.S. In his new role he will report directly to Sony BMG Music Entertainment Chief Executive Officer Andrew Lack and oversee all activities of labels within the Sony Music Label Group, including Columbia Records Group, Epic Records and Sony Music Nashville.
"The addition of the CEO title recognizes Donnie's many contributions," commented Lack. "From building Columbia Records Group into one of the most impressive organizations in the history of the music business, to successfully leading all of Sony Music's U.S. labels, he has repeatedly proven himself to be a strong leader and a highly effective strategist."
Since April 2003 Ienner has served as president, Sony Music U.S., overseeing the operations of all Sony Music labels in the United States and worked closely with the company's senior management team in developing and implementing strategic initiatives relating to a wide array of areas, including sales and distribution.
Among his many accomplishments as Sony Music president, Ienner oversaw the revitalization of the company's Nashville labels, which introduced Gretchen Wilson and Buddy Jewell. He also continued to build the company's A&R activities in a wide variety of areas with the debut of a broad array of new artists including Modest Mouse, Franz Ferdinand, Los Lonely Boys, Lostprophets, Coheed & Cambria and Switchfoot and also played a central role in bringing Prince to Sony Music.
As the head of Sony Music's U.S. labels, Ienner also implemented a successful restructuring of the company's domestic operations, combining back office functions at the company's labels while at the same time preserving their separate creative identities in terms of their A&R, promotion, marketing and publicity departments. He also oversaw the creation of the "shared services" departments, including Sony Urban Music, which is exclusively dedicated to nurturing and developing urban talent on behalf of the company's U.S. labels and divisions, including Columbia Records Group and Epic Records. In addition, since October of 2003 he has directly overseen the operations of Epic Records.
Ienner joined the company in 1989 as president, Columbia Records Group, a position he assumed at age 36, making him the youngest president in the label's 120-year history. Ienner served in this capacity for more than 13 years, earning him the distinction of being the longest-serving president in the company's history.
From 1994-2003 he also served as chairman, Columbia Records Group where he oversaw all operations pertaining to Columbia Records and its affiliated labels, and determined the overall strategic direction of the group. From helping to identify and introduce some of the most influential new artists of the past decade to further expanding the careers of the label's legendary roster of superstar artists, he is widely credited with transforming Columbia into a music industry leader in a wide variety of genres, including rock, rap and R&B.
Under Ienner's direction Columbia also implemented a broad array of groundbreaking marketing and promotion initiatives resulting in sales that have earned Columbia Records the title of the music industry's #1 record label in terms of overall market share for six consecutive years.
Prior to joining Columbia, Ienner was executive vice president and general manager of Arista Records, a label he joined in 1983. He began his music industry career in 1969 taking a position in the Capitol Records mail room while still in high school. From 1972-977 he was in partnership with Jimmy Ienner in C.A.M. U.S.A., a highly successful publishing, management and production company which represented Three Dog Night, Grand Funk Railroad, Blood, Sweat &Tears, The Raspberries, and Eric Carmen. In 1977 he co-founded Millennium Records, where he served as executive vice president until joining Arista. –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen