William Parker is a leading figure in the New York creative jazz scene. Renowned as a composer, bassist, and multi-instrumentalist, he is also an educator and author. Parker has recorded over 150 albums and has had numerous stage appearances. In the 1970s and 80s he was a leader in organizing artist-run festivals and music series, such as the Sound Unity Festival and Stork Records, which served as an inspiration and guide for the Vision Festival, the premiere festival of experimental music. Italy's Musica Jazz named Parker "musician of the year" in 2007, and in 2014 he received the Doris Duke Performing Artist Award. In 2015 and 2016, he served as an LOI panelist in Performance.