Cincinnati resident Tracey Artis is known as one of the Gospel music industry's hitmakers. As CEO of I Hear Music, Inc., a promotions and marketing firm, Artis is the force behind some of the genre's biggest hits including Andraé Crouch's "Let The Church Say Amen", Mary Mary's "Go Get It", Marvin Sapp's "My Testimony", Pastor Charles Jenkins & Fellowship Chicago's "Awesome" and Israel Houghton's "It's Not Over", as well as dozens of others. Because of her outstanding accomplishments, she has been selected to receive the Wendall P. Dabney Award for Diversity from the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB).
Artis was cited because she helped the economic growth of the city of Cincinnati and brought diversity to the community, primarily due to her I Hear Music In The Air Conference. Now in its 12th year, the well-attended Gospel music conference has held its concert at the Aronoff Center (in the Proctor and Gamble Hall) for the last 5 years. The conference is one of the genre's most popular and has included headliners Byron Cage, Israel Houghton, Marvin Sapp, Kirk Franklin, Kurt Carr and Dorinda Clark Cole. In addition, she has produced The Urban League's Evening of Faith since 2010 featuring the talents of Donnie McClurkin, Fred Hammond and Hezekiah Walker. She also produced The Macy's Gospel Festival in 2009 and 2010.
Artis was chosen by a committee of hospitality executives because of her "exceptional display of diversity and inclusion and the outstanding example that she sets in the hospitality and tourism industry". She will receive her award, one of the 2012 Spirit of Cincinnati USA Awards, at the CVB Annual Meeting at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 6 at the Duke Energy Convention Center.
Artis got her start in the Gospel music industry when she joined the staff of Gospo Centric Records in 1997 as the company's Radio Manager. She later went on to become Vice President of Gospel Promotions in 2001 and in 2004 when the label merged with Verity Records (Sony Division). Her industry insight helped to drive the power and success of some of contemporary Gospel music's biggest names. Under her watch and visionary promotions plans, the world witnessed the Gold and Platinum Certification of groups and award-winning artists including Trin-i-tee 5:7, Kirk Franklin and the Family, God's Property featuring Kirk Franklin, Kurt Carr and The Kurt Carr Singers, Dorinda Clark Cole, Byron Cage, J. Moss and Marvin Sapp.
In 2009, Artis made her departure from her corporate affiliation with Verity Gospel Music Group, a division of recording industry giant Sony BMG, and launched her independent promotions and marketing company I Hear Music, Inc. For more information on I Hear Music, log on to www.ihearmusicintheair.com.