Country sensation Morris will be the recipient of this year's Women in Music 'Breakthrough Artist' award, given to an artist who’s emerged as a leading voice in the past year, and released career-defining work.
“Maren Morris has dominated this year, easily becoming one of the most talked-about women in country music today,” Min added. “With a breakthrough nothing short of incredible, Maren has a stellar career ahead of her that will be marked by enormous commercial and critical success.”
Trainor first emerged on the national scene with the irresistible throwback pop of her debut single "All About That Bass" in 2014. The song went on to top the Billboard Hot 100 for eight weeks, and won two trophies at the Billboard Music Awards, for top Hot 100 song and top digital song. "Bass" also helped spur blockbuster sales of her first full-length LP, Title, which debuted on top of the Billboard 200 albums chart in 2015, and spawned two more Hot 100 top 10 hits: "Lips Are Movin" and the John Legend-featuring "Like I'm Gonna Lose You."
In the past year, Trainor released her sophomore album, Thank You, which reached No. 3 on the Billboard 200, and scored another smash with the LP's lead single "No," which peaked at No. 3, making for the artist's fourth top 10 hit on the Hot 100. She also won her first Grammy, for best new artist, and covered Billboard Magazine in July. To date, Trainor’s songs have received more than 2 billion on-demand streams in the U.S., according to Nielsen Music.
Morris experienced major success this year with her major-label, full-length debut Hero, which became the first debut by a new female artist to top the Country Albums chart in nearly two years when it debuted at No. 1 earlier this year. The singer-songwriter gave a stunning performance at the CMA Awards this November, backed by a full band and choir, and picked up the CMA award for best new artist.
Morris has also earned three top 40 hits on the Hot Country Songs chart, including the Country Digital Song Sales-topper "My Church," and her songs have racked up more than 1 million digital downloads to date, as well as over 116 million on-demand streams, according to Nielsen Music. She also appeared on the cover of Billboard’s Grammy Preview Issue, along with Chance the Rapper and Alessia Cara.
The 11th annual Women in Music event is held Dec. 9 in New York City and airs nationally on Lifetime on Dec. 12. The star-studded event is held in tandem with the publication of Billboard’s Women in Music list, which names the 50 most powerful female executives in the industry each year.
Madonna is 2016's 'Woman of the Year' award recipient. The pop legend's Rebel Heart Tour, which wrapped in March, solidified her status as one of the biggest touring acts in music history. Madonna sold more than 1 million tickets and walked away with $170 million. That makes her the highest grossing solo touring artist in Billboard Boxscore history, with archives dating back to 1990, having earned a staggering $1.31 billion in total concert grosses.
Also being honored at Billboard's 2016 Women in Music event will be country great Shania Twain, who will be receiving the 'Icon' award, which celebrates an artist whose historic contributions to the music industry establish them among the highest class of performers. Current Hot 100-topping artist Halsey will be named 'Rising Star,' recognized for her chart dominance and exceptional, unconventional talent. Finally, ascendant R&B talent Andra Day will be honored as 'Powerhouse,' for her breathtaking vocal prowess. Both Halsey and Day will also be performing at the gala.
Additional Billboard 2016 Women in Music honorees will be announced in the weeks to come.