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Secret City Records' Justin West Named Board Chair for the Worldwide Independent Network

The Worldwide Independent Network (WIN) has announced the appointment of newly-elected chair, Justin West of Montreal's Secret City Records, as well as Chief Operating Officer Charlie Phillips. In West’s new role, he will lead the network’s operations, stepping up from his previous role as Director of Legal and Business Affairs.

Justin West is the president of Secret City Records and Secret City Publishing, both of which he founded in 2006 in Montreal, QC. West oversees all of Secret City’s global strategy and day-to-day operations and has devoted his career to the continued growth and global development of the label and publishing entities. Secret City’s active roster of 13 artists presently includes Patrick Watson, The Barr Brothers, Basia Bulat, Leif Vollebekk, and Plants and Animals. West currently sits on the board of directors of MERLIN, as well as on the executive boards of the Canadian Independent Music Association (CIMA) and the Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent On Recordings (FACTOR).

West will be leading the WIN'S Board in order to establish its overall direction. WIN’s board is made up of directors of independent music companies and associations in all key markets around the world. Its board members focus on furthering WIN’s commitment to advancing, assisting, and educating its network of international trade bodies and continues to lead the sector by promoting international performance rights and representing independent rights holders in various international industry forums.

“A strong global network of independent trade associations is fundamental to confronting anti-competitive behaviour, maintaining a level-playing field for indies, and fighting for fair and transparent policies across our sector,” says West. “Charlie has always been a great advocate for the independent community and, with both his experience and expertise, brings the right set of skills to run WIN and carry-out its mission. It’s exciting to see him step into this role and move the organization forward.”

Charlie Phillips has worked at WIN since 2011, where he has been instrumental in establishing its status and its global membership. Prior to joining WIN, he was head of legal and commercial affairs at AIM. Since qualifying as a solicitor, Phillips’ legal career has spanned a broad range of areas in today’s digital music and creative industries, including a position as legal advisor for recordings industry body IFPI. His particular areas of expertise cover international performance rights licensing, as well as the interaction between music rights and data. He represents WIN members within DDEX and ISO.

“I am delighted to step up to the role of COO of WIN, and to have been given the opportunity to take WIN forward into this exciting new phase,” says Phillips. “In recent years, our global network of independent associations has already more than proved its worth in supporting independent labels and their artists to achieve success. I look forward to building on this success, and taking WIN to the next stage of its mission to deliver real benefit to the international independent sector.”

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Michael Raine is the Senior Editor at Canadian Musician. He is also a co-host of the popular Canadian Musician Radio weekly podcast.