Femme It Forward
President & CEO
From helping produce the female editions of the virtual hip hop battle “VERZUZ,” starting with Erykah Badu versus Jill Scott, to launching the Next Gem Femme mentorship pro-gram, the ethos of Femme It Forward is all about providing equality, inclusivity, and opportunities for women.
But for as much as she’s accomplished to help move the music industry ahead, Heather Lowery, President & CEO of Femme It Forward, is driven to keep making strides.
“There’s still so much work to be done across the board, however, especially for women of color,” Lowery says. “Whether it’s creating a stage for artists to share their voices, empowering executives to give back through mentorship, or providing opportunities for creatives through employment, we’re working toward the changes we want to see every day.”
Lowery began Femme It Forward in April 2019 as an event series with panels and shows featuring all-women lineups. By December 2019 Femme It Forward entered a joint venture of the same name with Live Nation, backed by Michael Rapino, to expand the platform’s reach across genres of music and entertainment mediums.
The inaugural Next Gem Femme mentorship program launched in August 2021, pairing 200 young women of color mentees with leading female executives and entrepreneurs in the music, media, entertainment, technology, and social justice industries.
“The response and support has been overwhelmingly inspiring, with more than 150 incredible mentors extending their knowledge to the next class of industry powerhouses,” Lowery says. “These young women have gotten internships, jobs, interviews, newfound confidence, inspiration, and direction. As we grow, we will continue celebrating, educating, and empowering young women with the tools to unlock their potential. I really believe Next Gem Femme will seed the next generation of talent across music and entertainment, and I couldn’t be more proud of these women.”
What’s next for Femme It Forward? Lowery says, “I can’t give too many details, but I will say this will be one of our most exciting, fruitful, impactful female-led years yet.”