Bell Media's Randy Lennox to Receive 2017 Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award at Juno Awards

Mark O'Neill
Randy Lennox

Music industry veteran Randy Lennox, the former Universal Music Canada CEO who is now Bell Media’s president of broadcasting and content in Toronto, will receive the 2017 Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award at the Juno Awards, the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (CARAS) announced today (Jan. 23).

“I am humbled by this tremendous honour,” said Lennox in a press statement. “Thank you to CARAS and all of the talented people I’ve worked with over the years, including the incredible artists that help define our culture and make our country proud. I look forward to continuing to help our stars shine brighter than ever, here and around the world.”

The Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award — to be presented at the Juno gala dinner and awards on Apr. 1 at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa, Ontario, the day before the two-hour televised show from the Canadian Tire Centre — is given to "individuals who have contributed to the growth and development of the Canadian music industry.” It is named after the late co-founder of the Juno Awards, who ran a Canadian trade paper called RPM for 36 years.

“Randy Lennox’s business savvy and ability to recognize talent has made him a force to be reckoned [with] within the music industry,” said Allan Reid, president and CEO, CARAS, in a press statement. “Not only has he been an innovator, but his passion for providing quality entertainment has helped elevate the careers of some of Canada’s premier artists.” Reid worked under Lennox at Universal as head of A&R for a decade.

Before joining Bell Media in 2015 — and bringing iHeartRadio to Canada last year — Lennox had climbed up the ranks of Universal Music Canada, then MCA. He became Universal Music Canada’s president in 1998 and CEO in 2001 after it merged with PolyGram. During his tenure, he helped sign or boost the careers of such Canadians as Justin Bieber, The Tragically Hip, Shania Twain, The Weeknd, Hedley, Shawn Mendes, Drake, and many others.

Under his leadership, Universal Music Canada was named Music Company of the Year for 15 consecutive years at CMW’s Canadian Music and Broadcast Industry Awards, which also named him Music Industry Executive of the Year seven times. He was inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2010. In 2014, the World Radio Summit declared him International Label Executive of the Year.

The following year, he left his long-held position at Universal to go to Canada’s leading mass media corporation, Bell Media. There, he leads CTV and English-language specialty channels and oversees all of the independent and in-house productions in English Canada. He is also responsible for the recent launch of Bell Media’s live theatre division (Bat Out of Hell: The Musical), and bringing the iHeartRadio brand into the country, including live music events.

Lennox is also a key contributor to the production of the Juno Awards (broadcast by CTV) and the newly rebranded iHeartRadio MuchMusic Video Awards, and acts as an executive producer for Canada’s Walk of Fame. He sits on the board of directors of CARAS and Canada’s Walk of Fame, and the board of governors for Massey Hall, Roy Thomson Hall and the culture advisory board for Ontario.

Lennox joins past Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award recipients, such as Rosalie Trombley (2016), Ray Danniels (2015), Frank Davies (2014), Larry LeBlanc (2013), Gary Slaight (2012), Dean Cameron (2011), and dating farther back to Donald Tarlton, Terry McBride, Michael Cohl and Sam Feldman.  The industry award has been given out since 1984 and was renamed after Grealis in 2004, the year he received it posthumously.


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