Triplett to chair BCMA Cultural Center Steering Committee
January 07, 2008BRISTOL, VA/TN — At a press conference on Jan. 4, officials from the Birthplace of Country Music Alliance (BCMA) announced that Kevin Triplett will serve as the chair of the campaign steering committee to create the Birthplace of Country Music Cultural Heritage Center in downtown Bristol.
Triplett is a native of Clintwood, Va., and graduate of East Tennessee State University. He served as a sportswriter for the Bristol Herald Courier and Gaston Gazette before working for NASCAR as Managing Director of Business Operations. In that position, he directed operation and administration aspects of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series, Busch Series, and Craftsman Truck Series. Currently, he serves as Vice President of Public Affairs at Bristol Motor Speedway where he oversees the Media and Public Relations Department, with additional responsibilities for Government Affairs.
"The history is here ? we have to provide a home to preserve our region's legacy," commented Triplett. He noted that the musical heritage of Bristol and the region has influenced artists from around the world in a wide variety of genres. "It is important for us to preserve that legacy for the future, to allow people to understand what makes this area so special." Triplett acknowledged that accomplishing this goal would be "a challenge, but worthwhile," adding that it will take the full participation of the entire community.
The Birthplace of Country Music Alliance is a nonprofit organization dedicated to telling the story of the living musical heritage of the Appalachian mountains and the cultural traditions that sustain it.
In 2004, Steve Johnson donated the 24,000 square foot structure to the BCMA. Upon completion of the $12.5 million project, the new facility will house permanent and temporary exhibits that will trace the history, cultural influences and development of country music. The facility is expected to draw over 75,000 visitors annually, with an estimated economic impact of over $43 million dollars over five years. Additionally, the facility will allow the organization to expand its presence and educational initiatives through programming for all ages, live musical performances, lecture and film series, and other outreach activities to fulfill its mission.
"By thoughtfully developing our plans, organization, and leadership, we have positioned ourselves to achieve our goal," commented Fred McClellan, President of the Birthplace of Country Music Alliance Board of Directors. McClellan noted that the organization has conducted feasibility studies, developed a conceptual plan, hired a design team, contracted with an outside fundraising firm, and created an advisory council. McClellan commented, "In selecting the chair, we wanted someone from the region who has proven leadership ability and a passion for the subject and Kevin Triplett is the right person for this job."
BCMA has scheduled a public meeting on Jan. 16 at 6 p.m. at the Bristol Public Library to go over the conceptual plan for the building and its use. For more information, www.birthplaceofcountrymusic.org or call (276) 645-0111.