Deborah Dugan

Deborah Dugan

The Recording Academy, the Santa Monica-headquartered association behind the Grammy Awards, has named Deborah Dugan president, replacing Neil Portnow, effective Aug. 1.

Dugan, who will assume the post in August, is the Academy’s first female president. She replaces Portnow, who was criticized at the 2018 Grammy awards for saying women need to “step up,” when he was asked about the dearth of female award recipients.

The comment prompted an online petition for the removal of Portnow, who helmed the organization since 2002.

Dugan is currently chief executive of Red, a non-profit foundation created by Bono to combat AIDs. She was previously an executive at Capitol and EMI records.

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