Al Andrews Named 2023 Recipient of Belmont University’s Rick Byrd Character Award

Al Andrews of Porter's Call
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Al Andrews Named 2023 Recipient of Belmont University’s Rick Byrd Character Award

September 21, 2023 | by Allison Fomby

Counselor, author and speaker to be honored by Belmont for contributions to music community in Nashville 

Belmont University today named Al Andrews as the 2023 recipient of the university’s Rick Byrd Character Award. Named in honor of retired legendary Belmont men’s basketball coach Rick Byrd, the award is presented annually to community members who demonstrate a steadfast commitment to principled performance in their field. 

Andrews is the Founder and Executive Director of Porter’s Call, a nonprofit he founded in 2001. Since its inception, Porter’s Call has been offering its services to recording artists at no charge, providing a safe and confidential space for artists to be off-stage and deal with the issues they face. 

“I am elated that Belmont will recognize Al Andrews as this year’s recipient of the Rick Byrd Character Award,” said President Greg Jones. “Through his incredible work as a leader in the Nashville music space, he is a proven champion for the flourishing of the lives of others and making change in the world — both things we are dedicated to at Belmont.” 

The Rick Byrd Character Award recognizes individuals annually in the community who exemplify the leadership and character of Coach Byrd, whose legacy is promoting a winning tradition and selfless culture.  

Andrews is known for his generosity and charitable spirit, providing a safe space and loving environment for those in need to find refuge and relief, operating Porter’s Call with the mission: “When an artist comes to our door, we welcome them and guide them to the help they need.” The name and mission derive from Benedictine monasteries of the 5th century — when a sojourner knocked on the door, the porter would call out a welcome, and then let the visitor in. 

“I am humbled to be the recipient of this award,” Andrews said. “To be given this award from Belmont, a place that exemplifies making a difference in this world, is a true honor.” 

The Rick Byrd Character Award will be presented during Belmont’s Night of Hope on Oct. 2 as part of The Hope Summit, a multi-day event focused on Belmont's convening leaders across the count who are interested in making change in the world. The gathering will bring together entrepreneurs, investors, researchers, artists, philanthropists, faith community and nonprofit leaders to discuss making hope real in people’s lives, work and communities.