Coalition of Festivals

We are a coalition of festival directors, producers, and department heads committed to integrating social equity, safety, and sustainability into our festivals – throughout our grounds, behind our stages, in our offices, and in our lives.​


Future Festival Leaders Mentorship Program

In support of our founding impact partners Diversify The Stage, Well Dunn Foundation, and, as well as Roc Nation School of Music, Sports and Entertainment at LIU Brooklyn, Coalition of Festivals launched the Future Festival Leaders Mentorship Program to address two inequities in our industry:

1. Diversify festival leadership to include wider pools of talent.
2. Close the education gap by demystifying festival management.

The first edition of the mentorship program began in January 2023 with 14 future festival leaders joining 28 current festival leaders for a weekly series of #RealTalk sessions and a monthly series of 1-on-1 conversations.

Future Festival Leaders:

Aaron Raus, Anita Obasi (SheSaidSo), Brenda Ceja (Well Dunn), Chinaecherem Nwaubani (Well Dunn), Christlie Jean-Baptiste (Roc Nation @ LIU), Erin Furton, LaTisha Stephens (Diversify The Stage), Marissa Solis (Diversify The Stage), Tyler Butler (Well Dunn), Patrize Richards (Roc Nation @ LIU), Quella Gu (Diversify The Stage), Temi Joseph (Well Dunn), Vix Brand (SheSaidSo).

#RealTalks with Current Festival Leaders:

1. Festival Production & Budgeting
Kyle Casey (Gravity)
Katelyn Scott (Fox Pocket)
Jen Stiles (Founders)

2. Community Relations & Permitting
Erin Bilbo (Goldenvoice)
Jeff Cuellar (Sixthman)
Naraya Mercado (Founders)

3. Site Infrastructure, Design & Operations
Melanie Dorf (Goldenvoice)
Adam Galay (Noise Academy)
Kierrah Matthews (Goldenvoice)

4. Security, Safety & Access Control
Inez Lopez (Goldenvoice)
Sully Sullivan (Warped Tour)
Kyle Casey (Gravity)

5. Stage Production & Management
Jon Baden (AEG Presents)
Bryan Berge (Gravity)
Barcley Boyd (Gravity)

6. Talent Curation & Booking
Danny Bell (Goldenvoice)
Paul Peck (Fandiem)
Jonathan Azu (Culture Collective)

7. Talent Relations & Hospitality
Saira Anderson (Hulaween)
Talia Ortisi (Goldenvoice)
Lily Huerkamp (Coalition of Festivals)

8. Marketing & Communications
Megan Adams (Outside Lands)
Leesa Allmond (Superfly)
Kaaj Patel (Goldenvoice)

9. Sponsorships & Partnerships
Alex Machurov (Fandiem)
Prue Marek (Live Nation)
Katelyn Scott (Fox Pocket)

10. Sustainability, Impact & Wellbeing
Jocelyn Gan (A Greener Festival)
Sunny Sohrabian (LA28 Olympics)
Evan Tzeng (Altered)


Social Equity Training & Festival Industry Conversations

In 2021, over 20 leaders from 10 festivals joined together for a series of social equity trainings led by SHIFT. Each training was paired with closed-door conversations led by Coalition of Festivals.

1. Leveling up from Allyship
2. Challenging Implicit Bias & Microaggressions
3. Unpacking the Gender Binary
4. Building a Culture of Consent

The diversity, inclusion, equity, and justice training sessions and closed-door discussions examined how implicit, explicit, and structural problems show up in society, in our festivals, and in our own lives.


Festival Industry Leadership Discussions

Shut down by the global pandemic and in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, in May 2020, Evan, Jen, Jonathan, Katelyn, Kierrah, and Kyle began discussing the unique role of festivals in society and our unique responsibilities as festival leaders.

We deeply understood the cultural impact and influence of festivals. We acknowledged the privilege of organizing these transformational experiences. We also recognized the growing duty of addressing real-world ills and inequities within our own festivals.

We opened our discussion to include more leaders. All of us shared our hopes and concerns for how festivals returned. All of us also agreed on the urgent need for more community building, knowledge sharing, and critical training.

In 2021, over 20 leaders from 10 festivals joined forces to launch the Coalition of Festivals under two pillars:

1. Be The Change: Programs for current festival leaders.

2. Create Change: Programs for future festival leaders.

2020 Discussion Participants:

Jonathan Azu (Culture Collective)
Jonathan Baden (AEG Presents)
Kyle Casey (Day N Vegas + Second Sky)
Laura Day (Burning Man)
Charlie Dolman (Burning Man)
Mary Beth Elam (Old Soul Production Services)
Steve Feener (Superfly)
Cole Froelich (Coachella + Stagecoach)
Inez Lopez (Coachella + Stagecoach)
Kierrah Matthews (CAA)
Brandon McEachern (Broccoli City)
Stephanie Mezzano (Firefly)
Veline Mojarro (SHIFT Consulting)
Michael Sampliner (Electric Forest)
Katelyn Scott (Buku + Hangout)
Jen Stiles (Governors Ball)
Bryant Tan, (Burning Man)
Evan Tzeng (Altered)
Katelyn Yount (Firefly)
Molly Zidow (Danny Wimmer Presents)​

Special Thanks:

Ken Weinstein (Big Hassle)
Law Offices of Stephen Goldstein
Jasmine Carpentier
Frances Yang
Tristan Hunt, Greg Marshall & Ben Turner (Association for Electronic Music)
Noelle Scaggs & Tadia Taylor (Diversify The Stage)
Kerry Black & Rick Farman (Superfly)
Nancy Tarr & Christopher Dunn (Well Dunn Foundation)
Janine Small
Tiffany Yu
Laura Carter​
Debbie Speer (Pollstar)

Press Coverage:

Impact Partners

Coalition of Festivals is a member of the Entertainment Equity Alliance, a coalition of mentorship, training, and employment pathway programs to promote diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) within the entertainment industry.

Production Companies

Steering Committee

Coalition of Festivals is are an all-volunteer grassroots organization. We are promoter, company, and festival agnostic. 100% of contributions funds the Coalition's activities for future festival leaders, current festival leaders, and our impact partners.

Join Us

This is our opportunity to unite, center community over competition, and rebuild a stronger festival industry, together.