As programming executive Brandon Tartikoff's spirit continues to endure, NATPE recognizes four figures in TV each year with the Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award.
With a singular sense of humor and respect for the creative process imbued in all that he did, Tartikoff left an indelible mark on the television business and popular culture but passed away in 1997, at age 48. His career triumphs included taking over a then-struggling NBC Entertainment at 31 and in a few short years turning the network into a ratings winner. Tartikoff introduced such timeless hits as Cheers, Hill Street Blues, The Cosby Show, Family Ties, Golden Girls and St. Elsewhere.
The Legacy Award is presented to individuals who embody the sort of extraordinary passion, leadership, independence and vision in creating TV programming that Tartikoff exhibited throughout his career. Profiles of the 2013 Legacy Award recipients appear in the pages that follow. This year's honorees are:
The Classic TV Programmer
by George Winslow
It has been nearly a quarter of a century since American viewers got their first inkling of the programming brilliance that would earn Tele München chairman Herbert Kloiber industry praise, myriad accolades and, now, the Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award at this week's NATPE conference.
The Godfather of Arresting Television
By Paige Albiniak
Before John Langley ever came up with the idea for Fox's long-running, successful
series, he was on track to become a professor of comparative literature. That's not exactly the career you would imagine for someone who ended up making his living catching police bust-ins, arrests and high-speed car chases on tape.
Living a Dream, Making a Difference
By Paige Albiniak
It's not every corporate lawyer who gets to fulfill a dream of running a television network -- especially lawyers who never really considered that television could be a career.
s Fearless Patriarch
By Andrea Morabito
Steven Levitan would be happy with a legacy of producing quality television that not only made people laugh but also made them feel something. Most people in the industry would agree that
, the Emmy-winning comedy Levitan created with Christopher Lloyd, has done much more than that.