Simone Eccleston
Director of Hip Hop Culture and Contemporary Music, The Kennedy Center for Performing Arts

Simone Eccleston is the Director of Hip Hop Culture and Contemporary Music at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. In her position, Simone is responsible for the creative leadership and artistic administration related to the Center-wide collective output of Hip Hop Culture Programming, in addition to introducing high-quality Contemporary Music and cross-genre programs. Since joining the Center, Simone has helped bring world-renowned performances and artists to Kennedy Center stages. She also established the Center’s first Hip Hop Culture Council, in partnership with Artistic Director Q-Tip. Prior to her appointment, she was the Director of Programming at Harlem Stage, one of the nation’s leading arts organizations committed to supporting visionary artists of color through the commissioning, development and presentation of their work. In addition to her work at the Kennedy Center, Simone is also the Founder & Chief Genius Officer of The Black Genius Foundation. Simone currently serves as a Governor for the Washington, D.C. Chapter of the Recording Academy and an Ambassador for the Recording Academy’s Black Music Collective. For her outstanding achievements and commitment to service, she has been honored by The Root 100, the YBCA 100, the Washington Business Journal’s “40 Under 40” and the Jackie Robinson Foundation as a “42 under 40 to Watch” Distinguished Alumnus.