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Music Executive Lenny Santiago Kicks Off Executive in Residency at Warner Music/Blavatnik Center for Music Business

Santiago, the senior vice president for Roc Nation, visited with students to share insights on the music industry

Roc Nation SVP Lenny S visits the Warner/Blavatnik Center for Music Business

WASHINGTON – Continuing its goal to provide Howard University students music business career opportunities, the Warner Music/Blavatnik Center for Music Business kicked off its 2024 Executive in Residence program on February 20 with a two-day visit from Lenny Santiago, senior vice president of A&R at Roc Nation. In addition to being the 2024 Executive in Residence for the center, Santiago will also serve on its advisory board that is launching this semester.  

As part of his commitment, Santiago will provide students with the tools they need to succeed in the entertainment and media industries, and he will lead programs that put mentoring, opportunity, and access to resources and education first. During his visit, Santiago met with 100 students representing different schools and colleges from across Howard University’s campus for an engaging group discussion. He also held office hours, meeting one-on-one- with students for more personal engagement and career counseling to help students thrive in the music and entertainment industry. 

Santiago began his career with Roc Nation as a street team member for Roc-a-Fella Records before being promoted to manage artist and repertoire (commonly known as A&R) for artists on the Roc-a-Fella roster.  From Roc-a-Fella to Def Jam to Roc Nation, Santiago spent most of his career at companies led by Jay-Z. Currently, Santiago’s serves as manager for DJ Khaled. 

Although he didn't attend college himself, Santiago always had a strong connection to Howard University. Many of his friends attended the University and over the years, he has attended Howard Homecomings and other University-sponsored events.  

“It’s critical that we shape the future of this industry by investing in the growth and development of the next generation. That’s why I’m honored to serve as this semesters’ Executive in Residence where I have the opportunity to mentor and share knowledge with the bright minds at Warner Music/Blavatnik Center for Music Business,” Santiago said during a phone conversation prior to his campus visit. “Together, we are building a foundation for the industry's future trailblazers.” 

Santiago will return to campus later this spring to serve as the lead curator for the inaugural Warner Fest, a three-day student-centered experience featuring a variety of events including panel discussions and a concert, designed specifically for students aspiring to be in the music industry. Warner Fest will take place April 3-6. 

“My biggest advice for anyone hoping to get into the music business is, first and foremost know exactly what you want to do, apply yourself and do any and everything it takes to get there,” Santiago said.


About Howard University

Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that comprises 13 schools and colleges. Students pursue more than 140 programs of study leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to Excellence in Truth and Service and has produced one Schwarzman Scholar, three Marshall Scholars, four Rhodes Scholars, 12 Truman Scholars, 25 Pickering Fellows and more than 165 Fulbright recipients. Howard also produces more on-campus African American Ph.D. recipients than any other universities in the United States. For more information on Howard University, visit www.howard.edu

About Lenny Santiago

Bronx-native Lenny Santiago, widely known as Lenny S., is a photographer and music industry executive who for the last 20 years has focused his work on hip-hop artists and culture. As a senior vice president at Roc Nation, the New York entertainment company founded by rapper Jay Z, Santiago regularly collaborates with some of the brightest stars in the music industry: DJ Khaled, Jay Z and more. His legendary Gold Standard Office (@kodaklensoffice) serves as an icon in the music industry that displays Lenny’s golden mindset and successes.   

To learn more about Lenny, click here