BILLBOARD JOURNALIST TOM ROLAND RECEIVES 2018 CMA MEDIA ACHIEVEMENT AWARD bdirienzo November 20, 2018 Country Music Hall of Fame Member Bill Anderson Surprises Roland Backstage at “The 52nd Annual CMA Awards” NASHVILLE—Billboard journalist Tom Roland was presented with the CMA Media Achievement Award backstage Wednesday, Nov. 14 during “The 52nd Annual CMA Awards” at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. Country Music Hall of Fame member and three-time CMA Awards winner Bill Anderson addressed journalists during the CMA Awards press conference, surprising Roland with the honor. In presenting the 37th recipient with the award, Anderson said to press conference attendees, “Even the pros look to Tom Roland. He’s one of Country Music’s bedrock authorities.” “At every significant juncture in my life, some song was there to act as comfort, to punctuate the joy or to assure me that I wasn’t entirely alone,” said Roland. “Music is really important, and to get an award for simply trying to convey little pieces of how it works—or how it’s made and marketed—is awesome. And surprisingly meaningful. Much appreciation for this!” After writing about Country Music for more than 35 years, Roland is one of the genre’s most trusted experts. For the last eight years, he’s worked as the editor and lead writer for Billboard’s weekly newsletter, Billboard Country Update. Roland spent seven years as the senior music writer for Nashville’s daily newspaper, The Tennessean, wrote thousands of hours of network radio programs for Westwood One and the United Stations Radio Networks, and compiled credits in The Hollywood Reporter, The Orange County Register, Country Music magazine, Country Weekly and GACtv.com, among others. He spent four years as the music consultant for CMT’s game show, “The Singing Bee,” and he’s authored two books—The Billboard Book Of Number One Country Hits and the Diamond Rio autobiography Beautiful Mess: The Story Of Diamond Rio. Roland also contributed to a Country Music Foundation reference book, The Encyclopedia of Country Music. Perhaps the most important piece of his career puzzle is RolandNote.com, the Ultimate Country Music Database. With 60,000 events from Country Music history catalogued, it’s an ever-growing resource that’s frequently used by Nashville journalists as a key fact-checking source. The CMA Media Achievement Award recognizes outstanding achievements in the media as they relate to Country Music. Print and Internet journalists, columnists, authors, and editors; television writers, producers and bookers; and syndicated radio reporters are eligible to win this award. A task force of industry publicists nominates a slate of five candidates for consideration by CMA member publicists. The publicists select the winner, which is presented to the CMA Awards and Recognition Committee and then approved by the CMA Board of Directors. Past winners of the CMA Media Achievement Award include: 1982 Jack Hurst 1983 Neil Hickey 1984 Dolly Carlisle 1985 Red O’Donnell 1986 No Award 1987 David Zimmerman 1988 Robert K. Oermann 1989 Bob Claypool 1990 Dick Heard 1991 No Award 1992 Mark McEwen 1993 Lynn Lester 1994 Judy Massa 1995 Clay Smith 1996 Tisi Aylward 1997 Jay Orr 1998 Chet Flippo 1999 Hazel Smith 2000 Neil Pond 2001 Harry Chapman 2002 Jim Patterson 2003 Denise Quan 2004 Alanna Nash 2005 Mark Bracco 2006 Donna Hughes 2007 Storme Warren 2008 Monica Escobedo 2009 Cynthia Sanz 2010 Beville Darden 2011 Ashley Dvorkin 2012 Jennifer Meyer and Ray Sells 2013 Deborah Evans Price 2014 Chuck Dauphin 2015 Cindy Watts 2016 Beville Dunkerley and Joe Hudak 2017 Brittany Schreiber Billboard journalist Tom Roland is presented with the 2018 CMA Media Achievement Award by Country Music Hall of Fame member and three-time CMA Awards winner Bill Anderson backstage during The 52nd Annual CMA Awards press conference Wednesday, Nov. 14 at Nashvilles Bridgestone Arena.