Introducing the 2019-2020 Board Of Directors for the National Women in Blues.
Kyle Deibler, has been a veteran of the global Blues community for almost twenty years now. A past president of the Phoenix Blues Society and board member there for over ten years, Kyle is currently the treasurer for the Colorado Blues Society and the director of its IBC competition. One of four volunteers with over 12 years experience serving the Blues Foundation, Kyle is known for his work at the International Blues Challenge and Blues Music Awards. As an event producer, Kyle has actively produced and been involved with 10 Blues festivals and well over 100 events in total. Kyle is also part of the writing team for the CD review website, Blues Bytes, that received a Keeping the Blues Alive award from the Blues Foundation for their contributions to Internet Content.
Tim Fik, musician, artist, and producer with over 35 years experience in the music business, hailing originally from the Buffalo, NY metro area. He is the lead guitarist for the Bridget Kelly Band and member of the North Central Florida, Atlanta, SunCoast, and Memphis Blues Societies, as well as an avid and vocal supporter of The Blues Foundation. Tim is a voting member of the Producers’ Wing of the Recording Academy and founder of Alpha Sun records (an Independent Label based out of Gainesville, Florida). He holds a Ph.D. in Geography & Regional Development from the University of Arizona (1989) and is an Associate Professor at the University of Florida where he teaches a variety of courses including Popular Music & Culture: A Geographic Perspective — a course that focuses on American Roots music and “the Blues”.
Lea Gilmore, Named by ESSENCE MAGAZINE as one of “25 Women Shaping the World,” Lea Gilmore is one of the world’s most respected and in-demand Gospel, Blues, Jazz and Inspirational vocalists; writers, social justice advocate and lecturer on human rights. It has been said that “Lea Gilmore’s rich and passionate voice is a gift from her soul to our ears.” Ms. Gilmore has lent her voice, literally and figuratively, to advocacy for the underserved around the world and in her own backyard. Known for her exquisite voice, bright smile, quick wit, and infectious sense of humor, Lea is also a winner of the Blues Foundation’s “Keeping the Blues Alive” (The “Grammies” of the Blues) award for her historical work on the contributions of women to the Blues.
In recognition of Ms. Gilmore’s dedication to equality and justice, she was recently named one of the first recipients of the James Baldwin Medal for Civil Rights. She served four terms on the Maryland Advisory Board for the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, has worked diligently for reproductive justice for Native American women (all women), and is a staunch and vocal supporter for marriage equality and gay and lesbian rights. In 2011, Lea won the “Ally of the Year” award from Equality Maryland for her dedication and work for the LGBTQ communities. Ms Gilmore received the “Consumer Advocate of the Year” Award from the Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition in November 2013, and was named one of the “Top 100 Women in Maryland” by The Daily Record for 2014. Lea has held many senior positions in advocacy, including the former Deputy Director of the ACLU of Maryland, Director of Diversity and Outreach for the National Abortion Federation. Lea also directed and managed the African American Philanthropy Initiative while the Program Director for the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers (ABAG)
MaryAnne Norwood (Bio coming)
Michael Reynosa: The company SwiftEyes Innovation, Inc®. founded in 2014 by Michael Reynosa, owns and operates Yippee Ki-Ay Blues. It’s official business is promotional activities. Heavily influenced by use of state-of-the-art technology skills and experienced from a distinctive 35 year career with Fortune 500 Companies and Department of Defense. SwiftEyes Innovation, Inc. offers their clients something not found elsewhere. The company is well versed in the Software/Mechanical Engineering domains with skills in the following areas: 3D Virtual World Meta-verse Design and Engineering, Artificial Intelligence, Live-Streaming, Augmented Reality, Mixed-Reality, Mobile App Development, Graphics Design, and Web Development.
Tom Watson, is a family physician in central Florida, a blues lover and musician, and a student of the history of the blues in general, and of women in blues in particular. He is developing a website called Heritage Blues to record and celebrate the history and future of the blues, and manages the Facebook group “Harmonica Masters,” dedicated to the world’s outstanding harmonica players. He appreciates the importance of the history, impact and future of women in blues, and seeks to help recognize their contributions and promote their success.
Lori Graboyes (Photo and Bio coming soon)
Lamont “Jack Dappa” Pearly (Photo and Bio coming soon)
Rae Gordon – Blues Artists (photo and Bio coming soon)
Brigette Purdy Rios – Blues Artist (Photo and Bio coming soon)
Michele Seidman, President/CBW created the National Women in Blues in 2006 after seeking female mentors in the blues world. this movement and mission were needed to level the playing field for women in blues. She started as an actress (Empire Records, Little Mouth To Feed, Dawsons Creek, Arthur Newman, Golf Pro, Another Life), and is the former (and first) Director of Film Studies for CFCC. Her band Michele and the Midnight Blues were on radio around the world when they participated in the 2006 International Blues Challenge in Memphis Tn. Currently directing & producing indie film, music events and live-streams. A founding member of CFIFN, served as a programmer for Cucalorus Film Festival, Associate Member of the Board for the Cape Fear Film Makers Accord, CBW/President for The National Women in Blues, former Board of Directors Tedx Hamsptead, and Winner of the 2010 Wayne Bradley Creative Spirit Award. Former Associate member of the Cape Fear Filmmakers Accord.
FORMER BOARD MEMBERS
The OG VP and creator of the Honorary Ovary Award, Terri Robbins