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Jennifer Knoepfle Joins UMPG as Exec VP, Co-Head of US A&R

The former Sony Music Publishing exec will be leading the A&R department along with co-head David Gray.

Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) has selected Jennifer Knoepfle as its executive vice president and co-head of U.S. A&R. She will report directly to Jody Gerson, the company’s chairman and CEO.

Knoepfle joins David Gray to co-helm the A&R department shortly after the company announced Gray would also be taking on duties as UMPG’s Global Creative Group, a new initiative to identify and expand global creative opportunities for its signees.


As part of her new role, Knoepfle will work with UMPG’s roster to co-lead the signing and development of new talent and to support legacy writers as well. She will also help “further grow the company’s unparalleled catalog of hits,” as the company’s press release states.

She joins UMPG from competitor Sony Music Publishing (SMP) where she built her formidable career since 2009. Her roster included many of today’s most sought-after songwriters, producers and artists, like Jack Antonoff, Aaron Dessner, Dan Nigro, Ariel Rechtshaid, Bloodpop, Joel Little, WILLOW, Tate McRae, King Princess, Remi Wolf, Maggie Rogers, Leon Bridges, Wallows, Salem Ilese, Noah Kahan and Lord Huron.

Previous to her SMP tenure, Knoepfle was the senior director of membership at ASCAP from 2005-2009 where she ushered in songwriters like Greg Kurstin and The Killers to the performing rights organization’s roster.

Over the course of her career, she has appeared on multiple Billboard lists for her achievements in the music industry, including Women in Music and the 2022 Billboard Power List. 

Gerson says, “I am delighted to be reunited with Jennifer and am thrilled she is joining us at UMPG. She is certainly one of the most gifted and accomplished A&R executives in the industry, and one that understands the qualities required to make a great songwriter, and possesses the instinct of how best to nurture, shape and strengthen that craft. She joins UMPG to lead our A&R team with David Gray, at a truly exciting time, as we further build on UMPG’s global creative strategy, which sets us apart from the industry – Nurturing next generation talent across all territories, supporting music’s biggest superstars, and reinforcing the legacies of songwriting icons.”

“I am excited and grateful to be reunited with Jody Gerson at UMPG, who played an integral role in my development and has served as a mentor since bringing me to Sony in 2009,” adds Knoepfle. “We are both aligned in our belief in identifying and helping to shape tomorrow’s great talents. I look forward to working with the entire U.S. A&R team to deliver creative success for our writers and artists in the future.”