CMA Women's Leadership Academy

CMA’s Women’s Leadership Academy (WLA) is a free professional development program for up to 16 women that involves interactive group coaching for high-performing, high-potential women leaders within the Country music business. Candidates best fit for the program should desire to unleash their skills, step forward in confidence, and create more meaning in their careers.

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With the goal of establishing and strengthening leadership skills, WLA participants should be ambitious, experienced music industry professionals with a desire to grow as a leader in the business.

This opportunity is perfect for:

  • High-potential, high-performing women willing to leverage their leadership and take a step into a larger opportunity
  • Women leaders in transition looking for an expanded or more meaningful role
  • Women in leadership desiring more fulfillment in their work and that are ready to create more impact with confidence and clarity


  • Women with at least 5 years of experience in the industry or at a senior level in their organization
  • Experience or interest in managing people or a team at some point in the duration of career
  • Can attend all curriculum sessions in the WLA program
    • Sessions are held during business hours. A candidate’s organization should support participation in the program.
    • All session dates are announced when applications open.
  • Works mainly in Country music genre
  • Must be an active CMA member
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To be considered for the program, candidates must either self-nominate or be nominated by a music industry professional. If nominated, candidates will be sent a direct link to the application. If self-nominating, applicants can upload a letter of support from a music industry professional. Both nominations and letters of support should come from a supervisor, mentor, or similar – not a peer.

Applications for the 2024 cohort closed on March 31. Applicants will be notified of their status mid-May.

Program Curriculum

The program will begin in August with a kick-off session and reception, followed by 8 in-person sessions that are 3 hours each, and conclude in October with a reception. Cohort members will walk away with an expanded network, a roadmap for career growth, and improved leadership abilities. Session topics may include:

  • Leadership branding
  • Imposter syndrome
  • Establishing boundaries
  • Managing conflict and stress
  • Communication
  • Leveraging influence


  • Increase self-awareness and confidence in leadership abilities
  • Harness communication and strategic thinking tools
  • Build personal brand for professional success