Jody Gerson, who has increased UMPG revenue by 27% since taking the role in January 2015, used the platform to make a pledge:
“I will not knowingly sign an artist to UMPG who has committed a violent crime against women — or anybody else,” she said.
It’s a marked step forward for the music industry; as the first woman to assume a chairman role at Universal Music Publishing Group, Jody Gerson has vowed to use her ‘power’ to empower.
“I don’t feel, in my position, that [behavior is] OK,” she told Billboard. “And I will take a hard-line position. Listen, there are people who make mistakes and I meet them and I feel like maybe I could change their lives, but in general, what I can do is I can be true to what I believe in. And I get to choose who we want to sign and who we don’t want to sign. And with everything I do, there has to be a level of integrity.”
Elsewhere in her interview with Billboard, Gerson said she hopes to help create equal opportunity for people, “regardless of gender, race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, etc.”
Gerson has been working with the University of Southern California’s Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, which is developing targeted, research-based solutions to tackle inequality.