One of the architects of today’s rap and hip-hop music industry as a founder of Def Jam, Simmons is still changing the landscape with his Rush Communications, a conglomerate that includes Def Jam, Rush Artist Management (a management company), Phat Farm, and even Def Pictures, a movie production house.
Russell Simmons took hip-hop, packaged it and presented it to the masses better than anyone could have ever imagined. While his brother Joseph was a member of the popular rap trio Run-DMC, young Russell began to manage the group. By 1985, Simmons struck a partnership with Rick Rubin, with whom he co-founded Def Jam. Upon signing a production deal with CBS Records for $600,000, Simmons built an empire that spawned the careers of Public Enemy, L.L. Cool J, the Beastie Boys, and several other top rap and hip-hop acts. Eventually, he sold to music giant Universal.
Today, between his vast business empire (which includes the successful urban fashion label, Phat Farm), relentless philanthropic activities, and social agenda, Russell’s fingerprints are everywhere.
bio/article found at www.AskMen.com