NPR Music has hired Lauren Onkey as its new senior director. In this role, Onkey will collaborate with local member stations, the sponsorships team, and the events team. She will also work closely with NPR Music’s journalists, critics, video team, and podcasters in this capacity. The position was most recently held by Anya Grundmann, who is now NPR’s vice president of programming and audience development.
Onkey’s career to date has largely focused on academia. She spoke with Billboard about her transition to NPR and the role of radio in today’s media landscape.
“My whole career has really been about trying to create public spaces for learning and sharing the importance of the arts, especially in music,” she said. “I’ve done that in a lot of settings: in the classroom, with community organizations, in museums and on paper. So to me, there’s a really clear through line from that experience to NPR Music, in that there’s still a lot of really important work to be done, and NPR has an incredible platform for leading the national conversation around music and culture.”