Heather Lowery, President and CEO, Femme It Forward

Heather Lowery
– Heather Lowery

The Visionaries

Executives Who See Things Before Others Do.

Heather Lowery
President / CEO, Femme It Forward  

One of the business lessons that Heather Lowery learned this year is that now more than ever consumers and music fans are expecting something more than just entertainment.  

“They want the companies they invest in to stand for something – to truly make an impact on social change,” Lowery says. “While our foundation is rooted in live music, Femme it Forward’s mission has always been to celebrate, educate, and empower women. We are making sure every program we launch gives back in some way to support social justice and/or female empowerment.”  

Lowery has always had a passion for music, but it wasn’t until she ran Larry Gold’s recording studio in Philadelphia where she got to see The Roots, Erykah Badu, and “so many up and coming artists (at that time that were birthed from the Neo-soul movement) perform live” that she actually became interested in working in the concert industry. 

“Seeing artists like Jill Scott, Floetry, and Kindred The Family Soul live revitalized my passion and connected me more deeply to the music,” Lowery says. 

She also points to the work of powerhouses like Sylvia Rhone, Suzanne de Passe, and Cara Lewis early in her career for inspiring her to reach new heights and empowering her to create her own lane.   

Lowery founded her own boutique agency, Agency For Artists, in 2005 and in 2017 she joined Live Nation as Vice President of Talent & Touring at Live Nation Urban, under the leadership of Shawn Gee, overseeing events including Roots Picnic and Broccoli City Festival. Lowery launched Femme It Forward as a multi-format series of all-female curated lineups in April 2019 and by December it entered a joint venture with Live Nation, backed by Michael Rapino. 

“With the current state of our nation, Femme It Forward has shifted its live presence to the digital space, and we’re committed to curating programs that have a deeper meaning while creating real impact and change,” Lowery says. “With that being said, we launched a book club, Revolutionary Reads, to empower women of color and allies with the tools to cope with and participate in the fight for the equality of black people in America through self-education and open discussion. We’re also launching Self Love Sunday, a weekly digital series centered in self-care, a drive-in series concert experience with an all-female powerhouse lineup, and a virtual festival.”

In addition to building many platforms, festivals and events for artists in hip-hop, R&B and gospel and providing vast opportunities for women in music, Lowery says that one of her most recent successes that she’s also super proud of is helping to produce the first female edition of the virtual hip hop battle “Verzuz” on Instagram Live with Erykah Badu and Jill Scott, which has been one of the most viewed Verzuz to date.

She offers this advice, especially poignant in these difficult times: “Trust your instincts and find the joy in your journey and lessons amidst hardships.”

Hot Takes

The show that changed your life? 

Booking Prince for his last 3 arena shows.   

Technology most impacting your daily work or personal life?

As we’ve moved to at working at home, Zoom has become an integral part in my daily work routine.  

The best live show you saw this year?  

Our Serenade show with Lucky Daye on Valentines Day.