The award was presented to TALA as the 2011 recipient at the 2012 Austin Music Awards which took place at the Austin Music Hall during SXSW. Accepting the award for TALA was board member and long-time volunteer, Rex Schuller and Central Texas Program Director, Alissa McCain. For the past 32 years, TALA has provided pro bono legal and accounting services to artists from all creative disciplines and arts-related non-profit organizations across the State of Texas. TALA’s services include one-on-one case assistance, mediation, education programs and a wide variety of publications. In 2011 over 1,000 individuals and organizations were assisted by TALA’s volunteer attorneys and accountants.
About the Award:
Cindi Lazzari was a well-known Texas entertainment attorney and member of TESLAW. She had an outsized reputation for her work in advocating for Texas’ artists, including getting legislation drafted and passed under the Texas Occupation Code intended to prevent bankrupt labels and distributors from including any recording masters in reorganization plans when past royalties have not been paid. Cindi passed away in 2007 from cancer, and her loss is felt by many in the Texas music community. TESLAW created the artist advocate award and named it after Cindi to honor her far-reaching work in artists’ rights and others who have followed in her path.
Previous recipients are Nikki Rowling (2011, for her leadership of an artist creditor’s committee that secured rights for over 500 creators); Robin Shivers (2010, posthumously, as the co-founder of the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians); the Sims Foundation (2009, for provided mental health services for musicians); Casey Monahan (2008, Director of the Governor’s Texas Music Office); and Cindi Lazzari (2007, posthumously).
About TESLAW (The State Bar of Texas Entertainment and Sports Law Section):
The Entertainment and Sports Law Section is a voluntary organization within the State Bar of Texas and consists of more than 500 licensed attorneys throughout the state who practice entertainment and sports law. Section members represent a wide variety of clients including employers, employees and entertainment and sports organizations, in both the private and public sectors. The purpose of the Entertainment and Sports Law Section is to promote and enhance the practice of law by all lawyers who specialize or have an interest in entertainment and sports law.
The Section sponsors the Annual Entertainment Law Institute, the Section’s continuing legal education program which brings together the top practitioners in the country. Twice each year, the section publishes the Texas Entertainment and Sports Law Journal. The Journal contains concise summaries, with commentary by the editor, on recent Texas state and federal court decisions involving significant entertainment and sports law issues.
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