SNU Alumnus Named President and CEO of Word Entertainment

SNU Alumnus Named President and CEO of Word Entertainment

BETHANY, Okla. (November 8, 2010) - Southern Nazarene University alumnus, Rod Riley (‘97) was recently named President and CEO of Word Entertainment, Warner Music Group's Christian music division.

Riley has served as Chief Operating Officer of Word Entertainment since 2008, and has been responsible for all the business operations of Word Label Group, Word Music Publishing, Word Distribution and Word Music.Since joining Word Entertainment in 2005 as Senior Vice President of Marketing, he has been instrumental in revitalizing the company’s staff and artist roster, as well as aggressively expanding Word’s artist services business, including launching or acquiring businesses in merchandising, e-commerce, artist booking, touring, brand management and sponsorship. In his new role, Riley will oversee Word’s entire operation, including A&R, sales and marketing, music publishing, distribution, church resources and artist services.

Riley has quite a vision for Word Entertainment and is excited about his new role. He says, “I believe music has the power to influence lives and I am honored to work at a company where our artists and songwriters are creating Christian music that brings hope to the world. The music business is in a historic state of transition, which requires our team to be committed to transforming the business model to meet the evolving needs of consumers and artists. We are now actively involved in partnering with our artists beyond recorded music into live concerts, merchandise, sponsorships, direct to fan and e-commerce. I am encouraged that as technology advances have definitely altered the business model for music, these advances have allowed the music and message to be experienced by more people than ever before, in more meaningful ways throughout their lives.”

Riley feels his education at SNU uniquely prepared him for this new leadership role, “My entire SNU experience absolutely helped prepare me for elements of what I have experienced in my career. Through Student Government Association, I learned about servant leadership and real life teamwork as we came together to plan and execute events with fellow students. The marketing of these events and the challenge of getting others to care and engage together, gave me experience I have drawn on to promote artist-ministries that I have believed in.”

Southern Nazarene University's mission is to transform lives through higher education in Christ-centered community. As a Christian community of scholars, we model the hospitality of grace, the pursuit of truth and the practice of discipleship, all within the Wesleyan-holiness tradition, as we prepare graduates who THINK with clarity, ACT with integrity and SERVE with purpose.