Women in the Game

Championing some extraordinary executives who are scoring big time in the world of sports TV
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There is a common thread among the talented producers, execs, strategists and researchers, investors, and operations and business affairs execs who populate the 2012 B&C/MCN Women in the Game honorees. It is this: In a sports TV world for which the word "exploding" remains an understatement, these women are the consummate multitaskers. They're not just busy keeping the TV world chock full of exciting action; they are often balancing several plates in the air, inspiring creativity or fostering fertile environments where great sports TV ideas can happen. When it comes to making sure viewers can always watch the best and the most, these women are ultimate fighting champions. And that's what truly makes this a list of industry All-Stars.


Karen Brodkin

Karen Brodkin

Executive VP, Business and Legal Affairs, Fox Sports Media Group

Last year, when she earned her first Women in the Game honor, Karen Brodkin, then senior VP, business and legal affairs for Fox Cable Networks, was busy finishing up a 10- year, $220 million TV rights deal with the Pac-12 conference that she negotiated. This year, as she is being honored once again, Brodkin has an even bigger title, and has been even busier, inking new and renegotiated major sports media rights deals for Fox Sports Media Group. More

Marie Donoghue


Marie Donoghue

Senior VP, Global Strategy, Business Development and Business Affairs, ESPN

Marie Donoghue went to law school at Columbia University even though she didn't plan to practice law. "I thought of it as continuing my liberal arts education -- I wanted to learn how to think differently," she says. More

Christy King


Christy King

VP, Digital, Technology Research & Development, UFC

The Ultimate Fighting Championship had a busy 2011, with the sport's burgeoning popularity resulting in a landmark deal with Fox, giving mixed martial arts its widest reach yet. As part of the agreement, the UFC was set to increase its original programming output from 90 to 350 hours per year. More

Paula Madison


Paula Madison

CEO, Los Angeles Sparks; Investor, Africa Channel

Retirement has been anything but quiet for Paula Madison, who one year ago departed her post as executive VP of diversity at NBCUniversal. More

Bernadette McDonald

Bernadette McDonald

Vice President of Broadcast Operations, Major League Baseball

Millions of Americans move repeatedly as they change jobs again and again across a lifetime. But Bernadette McDonald, Major League Baseball's VP for baseball operations, has been in her current role since 2001 -- amazingly, she had her career path figured out by the end of high school and managed to live it. More

Christina Miller


Christina Miller

Senior VP and GM of NBA Digital; Senior VP, Turner Sports Strategy, Marketing and Programming

Christina Miller knows how to multitask. Given the opportunity to join Turner Sports in 2009, she jumped at the chance. "Change is good," she says, adding that she grew up in New York City in a die-hard sports family. More

Robyn Miller


Robyn Miller

Senior VP of Marketing, Tennis Channel

Robyn Miller's life choices did not seem like they were leading to the post of senior VP of marketing for Tennis Channel. And it's not just that she's "a little embarrassed" to admit she's one of the few employees who doesn't play the game. ("I've taken a few lessons, but I suck," she says.) More

Lydia Stephens


Lydia Murphy-Stephans

VP and General Manager, Pac-12 Networks

Lydia Murphy-Stephans has been busy in her new role at Pac-12 Networks. She has spent the past four months putting together an infrastructure of engineering, operations and facilities people. Now she is getting into the planning of programming and the hiring of on-air talent for the one national and six regional TV networks she oversees that will televise more than 800 hours of live Pacific 12 conference college sports events annually when they premiere in August. More

Deanna OToole


Deanna O'Toole

Executive Director of Business Affairs, CBS Sports

To say that Deanna O'Toole wears many hats as CBS Sports' executive director of business affairs is like saying the Super Bowl has a fair amount of fans.More

Molly Solomon


Molly Solomon

Coordinating Producer, NBC Olympics; Executive Producer and Senior VP, Production and Operations, Golf Channel

Molly Solomon's life is "a little chaotic" right now. Of course, any working mom might say that...especially if she has triplets...and especially if her family is about to relocate...and especially if it's an Olympic year and she is producing the television coverage for NBC...and especially if she was just named executive producer of the Golf Channel (the first woman to be executive producer for a national sports network) and is doing that job while producing the Olympics. More

Sharon Van Zwieten


Sharon van Zwieten

Senior Executive Producer of News, Univision Deportes

When Sharon van Zwieten was hired as senior executive producer of news at Univision Deportes last August, she was given eight months to launch Univision Deportes Extra, a one-hour nightly Spanish-language sports newscast. Both Univision Deportes, Univision's new 24/7 sports network, and Extra premiered on April 7. More

Melinda Witmer

Melinda Witmer

Executive VP and Chief Video and Content Officer, Time Warner Cable

Time Warner Cable has long been a reluctant player in the sports arena. The MSO was the lone major holdout on the NFL Network, and it traditionally would not spend big on sports rights. But when executive VP and chief video and content officer Melinda Witmer decided the company needed to step up to the plate, she did so in a way nobody could miss. More

There is a common thread among the talented producers, execs, strategists and researchers, investors, and operations and business affairs execs who populate the 2012 B&C/MCN Women in the Game honorees. It is this: In a sports TV world for which the word "exploding" remains an understatement, these women are the consummate multitaskers. They're not just busy keeping the TV world chock full of exciting action; they are often balancing several plates in the air, inspiring creativity or fostering fertile environments where great sports TV ideas can happen. When it comes to making sure viewers can always watch the best and the most, these women are ultimate fighting champions. And that's what truly makes this a list of industry All-Stars.


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