Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences president Cheryl Boone Isaacs, has been announced as a featured speaker for the Entertainment Influencers Track for SXSW 2017.  The annual Austin film, music, and interactive technology conference, will take place March 10-19.

Other featured speakers announced today include: Lee Daniels, music supervisor Randall Poster; Television host Rachel Ray; researcher, academic and author Kate Crawford; Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford & C3 Group President and Co-founder Doug Newcomb; researcher and author Parag Khanna; entrepreneur Kimbal Musk; Author Peggy Orenstein; and Vivek Ranadivé, owner and chairman of the NBA’s Sacramento Kings.

Currently serving a fourth term as President of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, Boone Isaacs is the first African American president of the 90-year old organization, and is currently leading the efforts towards building a more inclusive Academy in the wake of #OscarSoWhite. She vowed to make changes to diversify the Academy’s membership. The goal was to DOUBLE the number of women and minority members of the Academy by 2020. At the beginning of the year, Oscar voters were nearly 94 percent Caucasian and 77 percent male, and the average age of the voters ranged from 62 to 63.

Earlier this year, under Boone Isaacs’ leadership, the Academy announced its 2016 membership class, which consisted of 683 actors, filmmakers, executives, and behind the scenes talent from 59 countries across the globe. The number of invites tripled from 2014, and doubled the number (322) from last year. Of the 683 invited, 46% were women. This makes the Academy 27% female rather than 25%. By adding 41% new members who are people of color, the percentage changed from 8% to 11%.

Check out the below conversation with Boone Isaacs as she shares advice and wisdom from her successful career as a leader in the entertainment industry.

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The HBR Media Team is a collective group of black women filmmakers, writers, and studio/network executives who are passionate about bringing visibility to women of African descent working in film and television.

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