Marcus Wren III
Los Angeles, California
Nicolas Emiliani is the Producer for Decipher Entertainment and specializes in filming and production of music videos, films and promos. Nicolas has been active in promoting the festival and in leading the effort to record and document the historic Pleasant Hill Rosenwald School and the preservation of the oral American history of the Underground Railroad Quilt Code. Nicolas serves on the festival staff.
Rayford Stephens retired from the Texas Southern University Police Department following 30 years of law enforcement, including tours with Prairie View A & M, Texas Medical Center – Houston, University of Houston and the University of Texas. He was the President of the Texas Police Association, and active in several Texas law enforcement associations. Rayford has been a volunteer with the festival since its inception, and served as President of the Board for two years.
Marcus Welch is a co-owner in his family's 100 year old business, Welch Funeral Home. His love of blues music began in the 1960's and continues today. As one of the founders of Alleyfest, he brought many blues performers to Longview during his thirteen years with the festival. For the past seven years he has produced Trick's Synthetic Podcast, a twice weekly podcast featuring all types of roots music.
Richard M. Bowden
Richard Bowden was the Executive Director of Music City Texas, Inc. and instrumental in developing the theater into the intimate, yet dynamic, venue of today. Richard has a storied career in music –lead guitarist of the Linda Ronstadt Band; Dan Fogelberg Band; Roger McGuinn Band; and the Pinkard & Bowden country-music comedy team. Richard is frontman for “Richard Bowden with Moon & the Starz”. and with Cass County's Bluegrass legend John Early forms the "Bowden-Early Experience". Richard was the Music Producer of the festival for eight years.
Natalie Rabicoff has one foot in the family business, Sobol Welder's Supply, and the other in her community. Natalie exemplifies volunteerism with a lifetime of promoting her community and region. Her vision for the great things Americans can achieve when working in partnership is reflected in the numerous awards from community and civic organizations have been bestowed upon her. Natalie brings to the corporation the experience of years of leadership and teamwork on boards and working staff projects. She has been a volunteer with the festival since it first moved to Longview.
Dr. William R. Wright
Frederic H. Walecki
Excited to have been recently named as the official photographer of Music City Texas Theater in Linden, Jim says “There is no greater feeling than having an artist on stage, sharing their soul with their music, and me being able to capture it.”
Maude Cobb Convention Center
Dixie Golden is originally from Memphis, Tennessee and has been with the City of Longview's Maude Cobb Convention and Activity Complex for 12 years. Dixie has over 25 years experience coordinating special events. Organizations such as the Longview Downtown Development Corporation, Muscular Dystrophy Association, and the Parks & Leisure Department have allowed her to gain an extensive background in various events. Dixie attended the festival in Linen several times and is thrilled to see it relocated to the Maude Cobb Convention Center.
Chair, Marketing & Promotion Committee
Gary Krell is the co-publisher of Piney Woods Live Magazine, an art and entertainment publication based in Longview, Texas. He began to discover the blues enthusiast hidden under his rock-and-roll skin when he heard Bono and B.B. King do "When Love Comes To Town" in the 1980's. Gary has promoted music and the arts in the Piney Woods of Texas and been a leader in bringing quality live entertainment to the community.
Retired General Contractor and student of the Blues. He even wrote his college thesis on the influence of American Blues on British Rockers. He has been involved with music in Longview for many years including Alley Fest and Cattle Barrons.
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Lezlie Kroger Chappell
Junior Showcase Chairperson and "All round Ram rod!"