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Citadel News Service
4 Oct 2011

Tandy Rice, '61, inducted into entertainment Hall of Fame

Tandy Rice, Citadel Class of 1961, is among the inductees in the second class of the International Entertainment Buyers Association Hall of Fame, which held is annual conference Oct. 2-4 in Nashville, Tenn.

Photo

Tandy Rice

Rice is president and chief executive officer of Top Billing International, a leading Nashville-based entertainment sales and marketing company specializing in world-wide booking and management of some of the most notable names in country music.

The International Entertainment Buyers Association (IEBA) is a non-profit trade organization for live entertainment industry professionals. Founded in 1970, IEBA provides networking, showcasing and educational opportunities to strengthen relationships, foster growth and increase revenue for the live entertainment industry. Hall of Fame inductees are honored for their exceptional contributions to the live entertainment industry.

"IEBA is proud to have Tandy Rice as a member of the IEBA Hall of Fame," said Tiffany Davis, the association's executive director. "Tandy is a legend in our industry and a very beloved friend to so many."

Rice was among more than 500 of the live entertainment industry's top decision makers in Nashville for the annual conference and is among eight Hall of Fame inductees this year.

A Franklin, Tenn., native, Rice 73, graduated from The Citadel with a Bachelor of Arts in English. He went on to serve three years with the United States Air Force Strategic Air Command at Loring Air Force Base, Maine. He also is a graduate of Vanderbilt University, is an adjunct professor at Nashville’s Belmont University Mike Curb School of Music Business and os also the founder, dean and lecturer of George Jones University.

He has been presented the Nashville Association of Talent Directors’ “Man of the Year” Award for an unprecedented two years. Rice has been featured on ABC-TV’s 20-20 television news magazine and in “PM Magazine,” “People” and “Newsweek” and in the New York Times and the Washington Post newspapers. He was a judge at the 1983 Miss America Pageant, the year Vanessa Williams was crowned. He was also a judge in the 1996 Miss America Pageant in Atlantic City. He has judged over 30 state pageants in the Miss America system.

Rice holds memberships in the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, the Nashville Association of Talent Directors, the First Presbyterian Church of Nashville, The Nashville City Club, and the Rotary Clubs of Nashville and Franklin, Tennessee. He was a board member of Bank of America of Williamson County, Tennessee, the Children’s Hospital of Nashville, and Battle Ground Academy of Franklin Tennessee. He is a member of Business Advisory Council of Lipscomb University. He is a past president of the Country Music Association and the Nashville Police Athletic league, and was recently elected to the Board of Governors of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce.

For 15 years he hosted the highly-successful United Cerebral Palsy Telethon on television station WKRN in Nashville, raising millions of dollars for Middle-Tennessee United Cerebral Palsy work. He is active in Boy Scout work and is currently Senior Executive Vice President of the multi-million dollar Country Music Retirement Home project.

Rice is the former host of Nashville station WLAC Radio’s popular “Good Morning Nashville” program and achieved the number one rated morning talk show in Middle Tennessee. HE also co-hosted Nashville Channel 5’s “Morning Line” TV Show.

In March of 2006, Rice was inducted into two Halls of Fame: The Franklin High School Athletic Hall of Fame (Tennessee mile track champion, 1956) and the North American Country Music Hall of Fame. Rice resides in Nashville with his wife, Barbara.

At The Citadel Rice helped create the Rice Endowed Scholarship Fund, which provides cadets with four-year scholarships to attend The Citadel. He has mentored and counseled more than 200 middle Tennessee freshman applicants to The Citadel. Additionally, he has participated in numerous Nashville area college fairs over the last 15 years to bolster interest in The Citadel leadership experience. Rice is the only member in the history of the Middle Tennessee Citadel Club to be voted permanent emeritus member in appreciation for more than 30 years of leadership and financial support. In 2008 The Citadel Board of Visitors presented Rice with an honorary degree of Doctor of Business Administration.

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