Knox Phillips is the past Chairman Emeriti of The Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commission. He was nominated for the award, the highest arts award in the state.
The Tennessee Arts Commission's Executive Director Anne Pope in a statement said: "Recognized for his leadership in the Memphis music and film communities, Knox Phillips has played a major role in establishing Memphis as a national and worldwide center of creative influence and impact. He is considered a goodwill ambassador for the city and the unique Memphis sound. Phillips have served on the national level as trustees for the Grammy’s National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), and has served as a board member of the Tennessee Film, Entertainment, and Music Commission, and he is the past chairmen of The Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commission."
The TAC statement continued: "Knox Phillips is a music producer, an engineer, and has added to the legacy of his father Sam Phillips, the founder of Sun Studio where Elvis and Jerry Lee Lewis first recorded."
The Commercial Appeal has called Phillips, “the goodwill ambassador and lobbyist for Memphis music.” While serving as a national trustee for Nashville’s NARAS chapter, Knox Phillips pitched the idea of Memphis having its own chapter. Ultimately, Memphis was selected against such heavy competition as London, Toronto, and Chicago – one of only 12 chapters in the world. In 2007, Phillips received a NARAS Lifetime Achievement Award."
Nominator Linn Sitler, Memphis/Shelby County Film Commissioner, perhaps best captured Phillips: "With a heart as big as the state, Knox has reached out time and time again to the state's music and film community members. He has reached out with both his wallet and his compassionate willingness to listen and find solutions to problems…or just to listen and encourage and praise."