Austin Breckenridge is a co-founder and current Executive Director of The A&R Foundation. Born and raised in San Jose CA, Austin Breckenridge got his start in the music business at the age of 17 booking small live musical events in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2010 Austin founded Nemesis Media Inc. an independent record label that helped release the music of some of the most predominant independent musical acts in the Bay Area. In 2012 he led the expansion of the label to Austin, TX and held the Chief Executive role until the label’s successful exit in 2015. During his 17 year career in music, Austin has held various roles in artist management, tour management, business management, and event production for a variety of independent artists in California and Texas.
In addition to his work within the music industry, Austin also has an extensive background in directly supporting small and medium sized businesses around the state of Texas. Since 2015 he has served as a Small Business and Commercial banker as well as a Sr. Small Business Advisor at both mainstream and community financial institutions.
Austin’s unique background in financial services, music business, and entrepreneurship enables him to connect with performing Artists and industry professionals alike while being able to bridge the gap between creative and analytical approaches to business.
Robert S. Austin
Robert S. Austin
Robert S. Austin is a co-founder and current Program Director at The A&R Foundation. He entered the South-Bay, CA music scene as a community-focused heavy metal vocalist in 2006. Soon after their debut, he and his bandmates realized that there was much more complexity to social activism and achieving success in the music industry beyond writing and performing their favorite songs, encouraging their listeners to “Question everything”.
In 2008, Robert served as the Associated Student Government’s Director of Programs at West Valley College. There, he spent the following 3 years producing annual music festivals and quarterly fundraising concerts with the intent to foster a community that supported local music among the student body and in the South-Bay Area, CA. While in this role, he influenced school board members to fund more concerts and remodel the 40 year old campus center building to be used as a versatile performance space.
Around this same timeframe, he partnered with Austin Breckenridge on ventures like Pitch Black Records, which would eventually become Nemesis Media – a San Jose based independent record label. Together, they produced independent music festivals, and managed album releases and tours in the San Francisco Bay Area as well as Central TX.
In 2012 and 2013, Robert served as a camp counselor for Silicon Valley FACES – a nonprofit organization who’s programs focused on youth development, building inclusive communities, and victim services for intermediate and high school students.
In 2015, he partnered with South-Bay artist manager Barb Rocks to launch and lead the San Jose chapter of Balanced Breakfast – an organization that connected Bay Area music industry professionals through meet-ups, concerts, festivals, and summits. Balanced Breakfast also provided a platform for he and his fellow artists and industry professionals to speak on panels where they shared their experience, knowledge, and skills that were crucial to helping others find success in the music industry.
Robert currently serves as a Global Program Director for Securitas – A security services, monitoring, consulting and investigation group. There, he is responsible for client advisory and international program oversight. His favorite part about this role is finding new ways to empower his teams to thrive as analytical yet benevolent leaders in the security industry.
Due to his multifaceted experience from the stage, the road, and in the boardroom, Robert takes a dynamic approach to his role as Program Director at The A&R Foundation. With this organization, he hopes to help shift the paradigm in the music industry, and put musicians first – By empowering them to not only believe in themselves as capable entrepreneurs, but to realize their dreams as very possible and very manageable goals.
Jeremy Boyum is a co-founder and current Director of Communications at The A&R Foundation. A 15-year veteran of the music industry Jeremy has primarily been a performing Artist and held internships with small music businesses. Jeremy has often found himself at the helm of sales and marketing. It was there that he learned to excel at designing elaborate funnels that created well-founded relationships between bands and fans. (or business’ and clients) He’s been a vocal participant in small networking groups such as Balanced Breakfast, and has been a panel speaker on more than one occasion.
President of the Board
Stephen Singletary is President of the board at The A&R Foundation. He is a native Texan and has an extensive background in financial services. Currently, Stephen serves as a Branch Manager with Wells Fargo where he started as a teller 13 years ago. He has been a professional manager for 11 years and has a passion for developing talent and leveraging his expertise to guide others through objectives and challenges.
Stephen also has experience in the live music and entertainment scene working as a bartender for a number of years before his time in community banking. In his free time Stephen enjoys giving back to the community, participating in outdoor activities, and spending time with his family.
Vice President of the Board
Angela Tyler is the Vice President of The A&R Foundation and the founder of MP Co (formerly Muddy Paw PR), a strategic press and marketing company for the music industry’s thought leaders. With 12 years of experience in the music industry, she has helped lead artist releases and client products to market. Client results include features on Forbes, American Songwriter, Business Insider, Lead Singer Syndrome, and more. In addition, she has helped clients increase their fanbase to the tens of thousands, and facilitated strategic partnerships between her clients and labels, festivals, and brand partners. When she’s not working with music, you can find her hanging out with her husband and dog Sawyer in Boston, enjoying a delicious dessert.
Secretary of the Board
Arielle Krimotat is the Secretary of The A&R Foundation and has been working as a student success advisor/coach for over 8 years. Arielle has an M.S. in Counseling with an emphasis on Marriage, Family, and Child therapy. Before advising, she worked with people struggling with addictions, the elderly population, and provided therapy for teenagers and their families.
Arielle also has an extensive background in live music and label management, in 2008 she assumed the role of vice president for San Jose based Nemesis Media. While holding her VP role Arielle worked with artists to develop their brand and execute on their strategic goals. Arielle also assisted in managing the label’s production arm and was responsible for monthly live events in and around the San Francisco Bay Area. Arielle remained a key component of the label’s executive team until the company’s formal exit in 2015. In her free time, Arielle enjoys going to live concerts, spending time with friends/family, traveling, and eating good food!
Founding Board Member
Katherine Sobel has been advancing mission-driven impact in support of Central Texas small businesses for over six years. Currently, Katherine serves as a Program Manager for the City of Austin’s Small Business Division where she helps provide entrepreneurs with education and resources. Katherine also teaches adjunct and continuing education business courses at Texas State University and Austin Community College. Katherine is currently at the tail end of a PhD program with a research concentration in financial literacy and has amassed wealth of experience in prior roles providing financing to small businesses in Texas.
Founding Board Member
JAMES GONZALEZ is a founding board member at The A&R Foundation. He is a native Texan, lifelong music lover, and co-founder of The Texas Metal Collective (TXMC). He has used his passion for music to organize and promote independent metal, hardcore, and punk bands since 2010. Along with event organization experience and knowledge of independent music, he brings his professional experience as Operations Manager at one of the largest craft breweries in Texas to the board. His resourcefulness, networking abilities, and creative problem solving provide unique value to the organization.
Most recently, Mr. Gonzalez curated an all-day unofficial SXSW music and art showcase at Independence Brewing, consisting of 12 bands, live art, and several local vendors, for a unique and Austin-focused experience. This diverse lineup and unique setting were a huge success, creating a memorable experience and lots of multi-medium networking among artists and musicians.
Other notable events curated by Mr. Gonzalez include Hoek’s Metal Fest, a recurring, multi-day event, showcasing independent bands from around the United States as well as several international acts. 2013’s event brought 72 bands over 7 days to multiple Austin area venues, setting the tone for his event production style and strengthening his ties to the local music community.
James is passionate about supporting independent art of many mediums and has strived to create events that create networking opportunities, cross-promotion, and an overall sense of community. He has been involved in the stories of so many musicians in the Austin area and beyond, giving him a unique perspective into the needs of an independent artist. His understanding of musician’s paths, struggles and successes is what ultimately led him to The A&R Foundation. James is excited to help introduce resources that will enable and educate musicians of all kinds, giving them an opportunity to improve their chances at success and longevity, and most importantly, sustainability.
Founding Board Member
Jacquelyn Ramos is a founding board member at The A&R Foundation. A highly accomplished Accounting Manager with 8 years of experience in the field Jacquelyn is known for her leadership abilities, she has established a team of future accounting professionals.
Throughout her career, Jacquelyn has demonstrated exceptional expertise in nonprofit accounting. She has successfully completed NALCAB’s Pete Garcia Community Economic Development Fellowship that involves training for next-generation Latino leaders to build the practical, personal, and professional skills needed to succeed in the community economic development field, and helps practitioners become more effective leaders through leadership development, technical training, and the facilitation of peer networks.
Jacquelyn’s ability to problem-solve has contributed to Blue Skies of Texas Finance department growth. As an Accounting Manager, Jacquelyn is recognized for team building and process improvements. Jacquelyn is highly skilled in business management and financial reporting, enabling her to help implement new accounting software and build solid processes for her current team.
In addition to her professional achievements, Jacquelyn is committed to financial literacy and early childhood education. She actively participates in Baskin Elementary’s Parent Teacher Association as the Treasurer, striving to make a positive impact on childhood education. Jacquelyn’s dedication to Baskin Elementary PTA reflects her passion for equal opportunities for all.
Jacquelyn holds a MBA from Texas A&M – San Antonio and Bachelor’s in Accounting from Texas State University.
With her exceptional skills, experience, and dedication, Jacquelyn is poised to continue making significant contributions in her community through her work and volunteering. Jacquelyn is a valuable asset to any organization, bringing a unique blend of skills that consistently deliver outstanding results.
Founding Board Member
Hursh Patel is a founding board member of The A&R Foundation, he has been working as a Human Resources Professional for over 10 years. Hursh started as a coordinator specializing in policy and administration. Currently, Hursh is an analyst with Korman Communities working on building the organization’s handbook, HRIS, policies and procedures. He has a passion for guiding and leveraging his skills to assist with organizational management.
Jess Mullen is a Program Manager at the City of Austin working on industry development.
Before joining the City of Austin’s Economic Development Department, Jess served as a Program Manager and Business Advisor at PeopleFund, a non-profit Community Development Financial Institution supporting access to capital and education for underserved and under-resourced entrepreneurs and small business owners. With a strong background in business coaching, process development, and curriculum building, Jess facilitated the programming efforts for the Education team across the state of Texas. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin and is a wearer of many hats having experience working in marketing, communications, sales, and international commerce.
In her spare time, Jess trains and competes as an Olympic weightlifter and loves to spend time at the local farmer’s markets.