Debra A. Mercado
National Director of Publicity

As National Director of Publicity for RMM, the leading Latin music entertainment corporation, Debra Mercado heads up publicity and public relations campaigns for five enterprises: RMM (Management); RMM Records and Video Corp., Ralph Mercado Presents and two publishing companies - Caribbean Waves Music (ASCAP) and Crossing Borders Music Inc., (BMI). Overseeing international promotional efforts executed by RMM International, her diverse client roster includes Celia Cruz, Tito Puente, Eddie Palmieri, Marc Anthony and India, among others.

Debra Mercado compiles all pertinent publicity materials, i.e., photos, biographies, recent news clips and products, and distributes them in a timely fashion to press, TV, retail, record pool, and club outlets. Special promotions under her supervision include press conferences and the company newsletter.

For RMM Records and Video Corp., Ms. Mercado’s promotional efforts include the approval of video concepts and coordinating video production details from inception to completion. She has headed many artistically and commercially successful productions such as "The Mambo King," the concert length home video release celebrating Tito Puente’s 100th album, the 16th Anniversary of the New York Salsa Festival at Madison Square Garden (the best selling salsa video in the history of the art form) and "Combinación Perfecta," an all-star concert video. Debra has also served as live producer for most of RMM’s music videos.

Ms. Mercado is responsible for coordinating all details of publicity for the company’s artists, productions and special projects including video production, product releases, media campaigns and all negotiations involving product and artist exposure in both the Latino and mainstream markets. In addition, she coordinates all artist appearances at award ceremonies such as the Grammys, Billboard, ACE, Lo Nuestro, and Alma awards. Through Debra Mercado’s diligent work, Tito Puente has received presidential honors by Presidents Clinton and Bush at the White House.

Moreover, Debra handles Human Resources for RMM assuming key administrative duties, recruiting, hiring and supervising employees of the company while enforcing company policies and procedures for all personnel. Further, Debra spearheads the RMM internship program providing opportunities to college undergraduates interested in the music entertainment industry. She has been a driving force for the company since she began following in her father’s footsteps in 1991. As media manager, Debra Mercado is involved in the purchase and production of all radio and TV commercials including writing scripts for voice-overs and placing print, radio and TV buys reaching pertinent markets while coordinating layouts and copy for promotional posters.

As production manager for Ralph Mercado Presents, she assumes all responsibility for concert productions at major venues such as Madison Square Garden, Carnegie Hall, and many others. She executes all promotions prior to the event working with major corporate sponsors such as Marlboro and Coca-Cola. Special projects under Ms. Mercado’s detailed directional eye vary. She has been involved with the National Puerto Rican Day Parade in past years as well as numerous seminars, conventions and movies. Other accomplishments include a project with the Reed MIDEM organization to produce the "Salsa Explosion" in Cannes, France. Prior to her position at RMM, Debra Mercado handled merchandising and supervision of the sales force for Miller Brewing Company in New York City. She supervised stores in the market in addition to the top 100 clubs. She was promoted to Area Sales Manager in Albany, New York where she acted as a liaison between five distributors that she managed and consolidated into two distributorships.

Debra Mercado graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communications with a Bachelor’s degree in telecommunications Management and Psychology. She returns to her alma mater to mentor current students as a panelist and moderator. Her contributions to the University have been officially recognized at the New House School of Communications Professional Gallery. Debra is on the Syracuse University Public Relations Council, as well as New York University’s Advisory Board for African American, Latino and Asian American Student Services.

Amidst all the above mentioned responsibilities and interests, Debra Mercado is also a dedicated mother of two children. She is currently married to the successful video producer/director/editor Eddie Harris. Her exceptional accomplishments as a Hispanic career mother have earned much prestigious recognition such as an Esperanza Latina Award.


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