The silver anniversary of the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame prompted many silver-tongued speeches during Tuesday night's sold-out gala at New York’s Waldorf-Astoria. Below are some highlights from inductees’ acceptance speeches, in alphabetical order.
Ed Carroll, COO, AMC Networks
— “In my career I never expected to share a stage with Dr. Phil. I'm very excited to share a stage with him.”
— On his practice of giving scripts to his wife at bedtime: “If she made it through eight pages without falling asleep we know it's a hit.”
Mike Fries, president and CEO of Liberty Global
— “I was one of eight kids, which explains a lot of things to my management team -- including why I eat so fast."
— “We have a team of warriors...to get to this point was not a straight line. There was a lot of scar tissue. We never made the same mistake twice."
Don Garber, commissioner, Major League Soccer and CEO, Soccer United Marketing
— On soccer in the U.S.: “It’s also just the beginning for us…I believe that over the next 20 years our sport and our relationship with broadcast TV will grow exponentially…I think the best years for our sport are yet to come.”
Chris Geraci, president of national broadcast, OMD
— “When the business is successful, the money goes back to creating more content.”
Frank Gifford, broadcaster, ABC’s NFL Monday Night Football
Gifford’s children Cassidy and Cody Gifford accepted the award on their late father’s behalf.
— Cody Gifford: "Cassidy [his sister, born 1993, when their dad was 63] and I [born 1990] are testament to our dad's exceptional virility."
— Cassidy Gifford: “He was a man that was motivated without agenda."
Kathie Lee Gifford, cohost of the fourth hour of NBC’s Today and former cohost of Live with Regis and Kathie Lee
— “Thank God I got this award before Kelly Ripa. How embarrassing would that be?"
— “I am deeply honored to be here tonight. I remember when we got the news I was going to be honored along with so many amazing people – Frank was very excited about it."
— “Every time he was inducted into a Hall of Fame he would say, 'aren’t I in that already?'"
— “I’ve done everything in this business but porn."
— “It’s the people you meet along the way, the lives you touch. That’s what I’ve tried to do with my life. Mom and dad taught me the most important thing I would ever have in my entire life is my relationship with the living god. I lost my sweet, precious daddy 13 years ago but he lives with me all the time. He always told me to define success by what you love doing. If you have joy, that’s where your success will be."
— “I have to thank my incredible husband [the late Frank Gifford, also inducted into the B&C Hall of Fame on Tuesday night] who taught me so much. He’s the most generous person I’ve ever met and he gave me the two greatest gifts you can give anyone and that’s their children. The hardest thing to do is to raise two children who love God and love their country. I guess they’ve done a lot of bad stuff but I don’t know about it. I also want to thank [our children] Cody and Cassidy, who will receive the award for Frank later tonight. I am truly the most blessed woman on the earth. I had 29 years with my incredible husband – I got that and a whole bunch more."
Bob Iger, chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company
— Iger said he always wanted to be in television "and aspired to be Walter Cronkite or [ABC News anchor] David Muir."
— On Disney’s decision to release the new Star Wars trailer during ESPN's Monday Night Football: “That speaks volumes about this important and powerful storytelling medium.”
Lou LaTorre, former president, advertising sales, Fox Networks Group
— “What a storybook ending to a perfect day for a retiree. This morning I played a round of golf. I had brunch with my beautiful wife. I took a nap. I worked on a project. It doesn’t get any better than this.”
Alfred C. Liggins III, chairman and CEO, TV One
— On his mother, Radio One founder Cathy Hughes, who was inducted into the Hall before him: “She would say 'praise to God for whom all blessings flow.' I am thankful I flowed from her, that I won the ovarian lottery. ...I have been her copilot in her entrepreneurial journey.”
— On Dick Parsons: “Thank you for telling Time Warner cable management why TV One is important and why they had to carry it.
— “I will end with a sales pitch. When 50 percent of the population will be black or brown, a brand's survival depend on it connecting with these audiences.”
Philip J. Lombardo, CEO, Citadel Communications Company, L.P.
— “As I look back on my career, I see it as a series of plateaus. As I move up from plateau to plateau, I'm reminded everyday of the sidemen and women, the orchestra of invisibility, very much integral and unknown. The Broadcasters Foundation is there for them."
— “If you have not taken on a mantra of giving back, you should now... I guarantee you it will give you an enormous amount of satisfaction."
Dave Lougee, president, broadcasting division, Gannett Co.
— “I always thought, as I'm sure others here, too, I really wish my parents could be here tonight... Hell, I'm just glad I'm here to see it tonight."
— “Local broadcasting is a huge part of the backbone of this country. I'm live in the DC area, it's easy to think we are the center of everything. The country is mostly out there... Our democracy is very interdependent on healthy broadcasting made for local journalism. Local news is the most trusted and used in the industry."
— “One external force we shouldn't have to face is threats from our government, specifically the FCC. The commissioner needs to understand they are threatening democracy if the wrong choices are made."
Dr. Phil McGraw, host of CBS Television Distribution’s Dr. Phil
— “We had Oprah on the show last week. It was really interesting what she said: “isn’t this amazing how this has come full circle? When I met you back in the 90s you were soon to be a guest on my number one talk show, now I’m a guest on your number one talk show and I don’t have one. Without Oprah there would be no Dr. Phil, so you really have her to blame. Sorry."
— “This has been an interesting ride for a guy who had no intention of being on TV ever. What kid sits in the sandbox and says, 'Someday I want to have my own TV show?'"
— “We wanted to give voice to silent epidemics and change the narrative about mental health. We’ve done 2,325 shows, and had more than 16,000 guests. What a lot of people don’t know is that we’ve provided more than $25 million in after care for those people after they are on the show to complete the work they started on the show. I’m really proud of that."
Donna Speciale, president of ad sales, Turner Broadcasting
— “I look at change and say, bring it on. Jon Mandel hired me...Jon also deserves an award. Thanks for inviting me to play golf with the guys. That was a career changer for me.”
— “Most people get uncomfortable with change and fear the unknown. I get energized by it.”
Quotes compiled by Paige Albiniak, Rob Edelstein, Jonathan Kuperberg, Michael Malone, Brian Moran and Jessika Walsten.
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