ETHIOPIA HABTEMARIAM

When Ethiopia Habtemariam walked through the doors of LaFace Records as a 14-year-
old starry-eyed intern, her fate in the music industry was sealed. Now, Habtemariam
is the senior vice president of Motown Records and head of Urban Music for Universal
Music Publishing Group (UMPG), making her the highest-ranking African American
female at a major record label. She tells Billboard magazine, “One thing I believe in is
not accepting any limitations. I knew when I was 14 that I wanted to work in this industry.
I haven’t stopped hustling toward that since.”
Counted among Billboard’s 2005 “30 Under 30”, Habtemariam has been credited with
signing household names and musical superstars including breakthrough artist and
songwriter Keri Hilson and hip hop hitmaker Hit-Boy.
Higher ups regard Ethiopia as a key creative executive for Motown Records. “It is an
extraordinary opportunity to call Motown home. And, I am grateful [to be given] the honor
and challenge to put a new creative stamp on a label that has such a rich history,” she
says.
Ethiopia continues, “I am truly excited to work at the label that cultivated musicians who
have inspired me over the years. Motown artists created the soundtrack of my life and I
can’t wait to develop acts that not only have cross- genre and cross-generational appeal,
but can reach worldwide notoriety.”