PAMA and Shure Incorporated Announce Recipients of 2023 Mark Brunner Professional Audio Scholarship
October 2, 2023
(l-r) Benjamin Nix-Bradley, Dennis Freeman, Valor Swezey
The Professional Audio Manufacturers Alliance (PAMA), in partnership with Shure Incorporated, announces the 2023 recipients of the third annual Mark Brunner Professional Audio Scholarship. Brunner, a long-time Shure executive, a past president of PAMA and a leading voice in the professional audio community, had an unwavering passion for education and mentorship throughout his career. Each $2,000 scholarship is offered annually to students worldwide who are pursuing an education in professional audio.
The 2023 Mark Brunner Professional Audio Scholarship recipients are Dennis Freeman from Middle Tennessee State University (for the third consecutive year); Benjamin Nix-Bradley from CSU Northridge (for the second year); and Valor Swezey from University of New Haven (for the first year).
Freeman, who has begun his final year in Audio Production at MTSU, notes, "The Mark Brunner Scholarship has opened the opportunity for me to continue and further my studies under the audio production degree. I am forever grateful for the privilege of having this scholarship! I look forward to all my future plans, including an internship in the spring at a local recording studio."
Nix-Bradley, who is studying Music Composition and Commercial & Media Writing at CSU Northridge, remarks, "This scholarship and the support of PAMA empowers and encourages me to dive into music technology, education, and outreach. It helps me acquire social skills and software to complete more ambitious projects with fellow student artists. I am grateful for this organization and the positive impact it has had on my professional network. Since last summer, I have run music technology workshops at a local high school and worked as an archival intern at Ravi Shankar's Music Circle. The scholarship this year will help me finish strong at CSUN. I'm looking forward to what these experiences will bring to my senior recital."
Swezey, who is studying Music and Sound Recording at University of New Haven, adds, "This scholarship really does mean a lot to me because, like most people in college right now, money can be a huge barrier to get past. So, this scholarship lets me focus my energy on my classes, rather than how I'm going to pay for books and supplies."
On behalf of PAMA, Chris Regan, chair of the board of directors, states, "For the third straight year, we have been able to honor the legacy of Mark Brunner with awarding assistance to the next generation of audio professionals. We are pleased to once again help Dennis Freeman and Benjamin Nix-Bradley with their pursuits, and to add Valor Swezey to the roster of young talent receiving this scholarship. Mark had a passion for mentorship, and he would certainly be proud of these recipients. We thank Shure for partnering with PAMA on this scholarship and for making it possible. PAMA received a record number of student applications this year and we are thrilled to see the scholarship continue to grow."
"Expanding to three Mark Brunner Scholarship recipients is something I know Mark would be very proud of," says Chris Schyvinck, president and CEO of Shure. "The number of applicants has grown significantly and has become more diverse. We're proud to help the development of the next generation of leaders in this industry."
A former President of PAMA from 2011-2013, Brunner provided a consistent voice to the strategic direction of PAMA and its role in advancing the professional audio industry. Mark joined Shure in 1989 and during his tenure held several key positions, including director of advertising and managing director of the musical instrument and touring sound business unit. Most recently, Mark was vice president of global corporate and government relations, where he worked on numerous industry issues, including the FCC rules for wireless device operation/frequency, spectrum allocation, and lobbied to protect the wireless microphone market sector. Additionally, he was a prominent member of The Recording Academy Producers & Engineers Wing Manufacturers Council, where he frequently shared his views on legislative wireless white space and broadband issues as well as other related industry matters.
Individuals and companies interested in supporting the Mark Brunner Professional Audio Scholarship fund may donate via the PAMA website here.
For more information, please go to www.pamalliance.org/scholarship.