Del R. Bryant today (Aug. 23) assumed the post of president/CEO of BMI, about a week earlier than had been expected. One of Bryant's first actions as chief will be to preside over Friday's BMI Urban A

Del R. Bryant today (Aug. 23) assumed the post of president/CEO of BMI, about a week earlier than had been expected. One of Bryant's first actions as chief will be to preside over Friday's BMI Urban Awards at the Fontainebleau Hilton in Miami Beach.

As previously reported, Bryant takes over as president/CEO of the performing rights body from Frances W. Preston, who held the role for 18 years.

Bryant joined BMI in Nashville in 1972. He moved to New York in 1988 and was named VP of performing rights. In 1991, he was upped to senior VP of performing rights and writer/publisher relations, directing staffers in New York, L.A., Nashville, Atlanta, Miami, Puerto Rico and London. He was named executive VP in 2002, adding media and general licensing to his responsibilities.

Preston takes the post of president emeritus until the end of the year. She will then work as a consultant to BMI, focusing on international relationships and public policy.