ATLANTA—Eddie Carswell and Billy Goodwin, founding members of Grammy-nominated NewSong, were named Musician of the Year at the inaugural The Champions of the Faith Awards & Benefit Concert, held this week at the International Christian Retail Show in Atlanta.
Presented by the Premier Foundation, in partnership with the Association For Christian Retail (CBA), the awards recognize businesses, organizations, entertainers, individuals and Christian retailers and vendors who are “champions” of the Christian faith by living lives dedicated to the principles taught by Jesus Christ.
In addition to Carswell and Goodwin, honorees included NASCAR’s Trevor Bayne (Athlete of the Year); Karen Kingsbury (Author of the Year); World Vision’s Richard Stearns (Charity of the Year); and AFFIRM Films/Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Rich Peluso (Business Person of the Year), among others.  The event featured a concert by NewSong, along with GMA Artist of the Year Francesca Battistelli, as well as special guests Mike Donehey of Tenth Avenue North and visual artist Jared Emerson.  
The Premier Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) public foundation committed to fulfilling the mission of spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. With the cooperation of the Premier Group (Premier Productions, Premier Christian Cruises, Premier Festivals and Camp Electric), the Premier Foundation touches millions of people every year through Christian concerts, radio and other Christ-centered events.
Co-founded by Carswell and Goodwin in 1981, NewSong is celebrating an unprecedented 30th year in Christian music. One True God, the band’s 17th recording, debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Christian/Gospel Albums chart in May, while NewSong’s Winter Jam 2011 Tour Spectacular was the #1 tour in the world for the first quarter, according to Pollstar.  The group has amassed 20 #1 singles, a Grammy nomination, and a #1 mainstream adult contemporary single, among numerous other achievements.
For further information on NewSong, visit or, and for additional information on The Champions of the Faith Awards & Benefit Concert, visit  

Photo: Pictured at the First Annual Champions of the Faith Awards & Benefit Concert are (l-r) Gary Gentry, owner, The Premier Group; honoree Eddie Carswell, founding member of NewSong; Gene Krcelic, president, the Premier Foundation; and honoree Billy Goodwin, founding member of NewSong. (photo: Leland Holder, Leland On Location Photographic)