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TMA Co-Founder


Seymour Heller co-founded the Talent Managers Association alongside Jess Rand in the 1950's, originally incorporating as the Conference of Personal Managers.

Born in Cleveland, Heller worked for MCA during his college years, representing some of the leading names in big band music, including Tommy Dorsey, Glenn Miller, Guy Lombardo and Paul Whiteman.

During World War II, Heller served in the Coast Guard and worked as an advance man for the Coast Guard stage show “Tars and Spars,” which featured actor Victor Mature, comedian Sid Caesar, and dancers Gower Champion and Bob Fosse.

In 1947, Heller teamed with Dick Gabbe and Sam Lutz to form Gabbe, Lutz and Heller, one of the first bicoastal personal management firms. Their roster of artists included Lawrence Welk, Tex Benecke, Frankie Laine, Al Martino and Skitch Henderson.


His career as a talent manager spanned over 60 years. Through his long career, however, Heller’s most profitable association was with Liberace.


Heller remained an active member of the TMA until his passing. The TMA created The Heller Awards in honor of his memory - a gathering to recognize talent industry professionals who exemplify the professionalism, dedication, and high ethical standards which characterize Heller’s legacy.

In Memorium: 2001

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