kenny lattimore & lamman rucker

R&B singer Kenny Lattimore and actor Lamman Rucker at the 3rd Annual Merge Summit Conference. (Photo credit: Maury Phillips, Courtesy of GQ Media & PR / The FrontPage Firm)

*(Los Angeles, CA)  — Relevé Entertainment has announced that THE MERGE SUMMIT 2012 will be held August 23-25, 2012 at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel, Los Angeles.

The event, presented in association with partners EMI Music Publishing, Verity Gospel Music Group, and UPSCALE magazine, integrates faith and entertainment and provides a platform for men and women of faith to interface with, learn from and partner with leading executives and talent in the entertainment industry.

“We are so excited to announce that we will return for the fourth year”, said SUMMIT Founder and Chair Holly Carter. “Each year, THE MERGE SUMMIT has grown and changed to represent the evolution of the entertainment business, while always remaining true to our original purpose: to give a voice and opportunity for the gifts and talent of creative men and women of faith who have stories to tell.”

Added SUMMIT Co-Founder & Co-Chair Robi Reed: “Each year, I grow more excited with anticipation of the Merge. It has proven to be an invaluable source of information for all who attend. I have no doubt this time around will be even greater.”

Gospel superstar Kirk Franklin said, “I’m excited about the Merge Summit … by partnering faith with media… we are able to cast a wider net, impact culture in unimaginable ways.”

The multifaceted program, one of the largest entertainment industry events for people of faith, is a complete weekend of education, inspiration and entertainment. Nearly 100 of the industry’s top entertainers and executives will lead more than 20 interactive panel discussions, workshops and Master Class sessions, covering the spectrum of music, television, film, radio, creative development, branding, management and new media.

Confirmed presenters (in alphabetical order), as of July 3, 2012:

Austyn Biggers, Sr. Director of Development, BET Networks

Charlie Jordan Brookins, Senior Vice President, Original Programming, BET Networks

Clint Culpepper, President, Screen Gems

Debra Langford, Entertainment Industry Veteran

Detavio Samuels, Executive Vice President/Director of Client Services, GlobalHue

DeVon Franklin, Vice President of Production, Columbia Pictures

Endyia Kinney Sterns, Executive Director, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN)

Essence Atkins, Actress (Are We There Yet?, Half & Half, The Smart Guy)

Harry Lennix, Actor (Man of Steel, A Beautiful Soul, The Matrix, The Five Heartbeats)

Holly Carter, President/Producer, Relevé Entertainment (A Beautiful Soul, The Gospel)

Jazzy Jordan, Executive Vice President/General Manager, Verity Gospel Music Group

Jeff Clanagan, CEO, Code Black Entertainment

Jon Platt, President, North America Creative, EMI Music Publishing

Kary McHoul, President, Nigel Lythgoe Entertainment

Kelly Griffin, Sr. Director, Music Programming, BET Networks

Kirk Franklin, Author/Host/Recording Artist

Mali Music, Recording Artist

Michael Elliot, Screenwriter (Like Mike, Brown Sugar, Just Wright)

Myesha Chaney, Kingdomanity Recording Artist

Niija Kuykendall, Director of Development, Warner Bros. Pictures

Rob Gibbs, Music Talent Agent, ICM Partners

Robi Reed, Vice President, Talent and Casting, Original Programming, BET Networks

Rose Catherine Pinkney, VP, Development and Original Programming, TV Land

Rushion McDonald, CEO/Executive Producer, NuOpp, Inc.

Sheldon Candis, Director (LUV)

Sheilah Belle, Editor in Chief, “The Belle Report”

Stephen A. Smith, Journalist/Commentator/Analyst, ESPN Networks

Suzanne de Passe, Co-Chairman, de Passe Jones Entertainment

Tirrell Whittley, Principal/CEO, Liquid Soul Media

Touré Roberts, Pastor, One Church International

Tracey Edmonds, Producer (Jumping the Broom, New in Town, Soul Food The Series)

Traci Lynn Blackwell, Vice President, Current Programming, The CW Network

Will Packer, Producer (Think Like a Man, Obsessed, Stomp The Yard, Takers, This Christmas)

Wendy Raquel Robinson, Actress/Philanthropist

Zola Mashariki, Senior Vice President, Production, FOX Searchlight Pictures

 For more information and to register, please visit



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