The Business of Entertainment, Media & Sports: Leading Change in Challenging Times
Staff TBD
Music Industry in the Digital Age

Nahshon L. Craig, Esq. is Sr. Vice President of Business and Legal Affairs at Rush Communications, the holding company for Russell Simmons' worldwide fashion, entertainment, digital, and philanthropic activities. For the past decade, Nahshon's role has evolved from legal intern to point-person overseeing all commercial, licensing, shareholding, and litigation activities for the company, as well as playing a role in business development and marketing.

Craig also serves as Chief Operating Officer of All Def Digital (ADD), a company that promises to be the world's foremost digital media group targeting the NEW AMERICAN MAINSTREAM. Spearheaded by Russell Simmons, prolific film/TV producer-director Brian Robbins, and music impresario Steve Rifkin, ADD will be the go-to cross-cultural network for Millenials looking to satisfy their appetite for Music, Humor, Celebrity, Lifestyle and Social Voice & Connectivity.

Prior to joining Rush Communications, Craig served as a law clerk for Selverne, Mandelbaum & Mintz, LLP. While in law school, Craig gained valuable experience interning at edel Entertainment/RED Distribution and Loud Records. And as an extern with the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), Nahshon had a front row seat to examine the precedent-setting cases surrounding peer-to-peer sharing platforms, including Napster and Kazaa, which were being challenged by the RIAA.

Nahshon is currently serving his third three-year term on the Board of Directors of the New York Civil Liberties Union. He also serves as Secretary of the Board for both (a digital media venture with Accel Partners) and the Diamond Empowerment Fund, a nonprofit international organization that supports education initiatives that empower economically disadvantaged people in African nations where diamonds are a natural resource.

Nahshon received his AB from Greenville Technical College, BA from the University of South Carolina (Upstate), JD from The George Washington University Law School, and MBA from Cornell University. He is an active member of the District of Columbia Bar and a member of its Arts, Entertainment, Media and Sports Law Section since 2005.

Social Media and Digital Communication
Dr. Natalie Petouhoff

Dr. Natalie's pracitcal client experience and her proven ability to help businesses — get started in social media, fast track, measure and optimize social media initiatives, vet and choose from top social media software, as well as optimize change, organizational alignment and deliver training &emdash; are the key ways she guides her clients to optimize their social media ROI and business results.

As a Forrester Analyst, Dr. Natalie led the pack by creating business cases for social media by writing the world's firts social media ROI model for PR, markeing and cusomer service.

As a sought after thought leader, her work is the subject of four books and hundreds of white papers on business, marketing, public relations, and social media and is featured in numerous articles in USAToday, New York Times, Business Week, Fast Company, and TV interviews.

In addition to helping brands with social media intitiatives she deelops strategic, competitive marketing reviews and messagin for social media/software companies, prepares them for MagicQuadrant's and Waves, as well as writes white papers, e-books, and accompanying webinars so the vendor rises above the noise and customers clearly see how the software's unique capabilities help businesses reach the business goals.

Sports Marketing and Management
Mark Francis

Marc Francis, a native of Fredericton, NB, Canada, Mark holds both an MBA and MA in Sports & Recreation Administration from the University of New Brunswick and has recently completed a Certificate in Marketing (Social Media) from UCLA Extension. A life-long sports enthusiast Mark is a specialist in the areas of Sports Management & Marketing with significant interests in Brand Management, Marketing, Business Development, Law and the exciting field of Social Media Marketing. He boasts a wealth of experience at all levels of sport from academic, business, administrative and high-performance coaching perspectives that enable him to speak from experience when it comes to his business relationships and teachings. He speaks regularly on the topic of Sports Marketing & Management having spoken most recently at UCLA, UCLA Extension, Occidental College, University of New Brunswick and University of California Irvine. Through his current and prior professional associations with esteemed organizations including as the UCLA MEMES Center & Anderson School of Management, BaAM Productions, Gravity Summit, Los Angeles Kings (NHL), University of New Brunswick (CIS), British Columbia Lions (CFL), and numerous hi-level amateur sports organizations, Mark has developed an extensive professional network throughout all levels of the sports industry, many of whom appear annually during his Sports Marketing course delivered through UCLA’s Anderson School of Management.

Mark also has a strong history of community involvement having served for the past eleven years as a member of the Board of Directors for Fredericton Sports Investments Ltd., which has raised over $2.5 Million for underprivileged youth since 1983. At present he is serving as a Sports Marketing Consultant for the 4th Annual Gravity Summit which is the premier social media conference in North America at present. Mark also serves as volunteer Head Coach of the Men’s Hockey program at UCLA where he has recently been selected as one of two finalists for the PAC 8 Coach of the Year Award for 2012. He was also selected as Head Coach of the PAC-8 Selects at the ACHA National Championships in Philadelphia in March of 2011. Mark also serves as a proud volunteer and donor with which is an esteemed National Bone Marrow Donor program.