Why This Matters: The 2018 B&C Hall of Fame class is the 28th group of top television industry leaders to be honored by the magazine.
They are innovators and image-makers, trailblazers and groundbreakers, forerunners and trendsetters — in short, the leaders of our industry, then and now. And they make up an exclusive membership: The 27 years of inductees to the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame.
On Oct. 29, at the Ziegfeld Ballroom in New York, B&C adds a 28th class to its prestigious group. Below, in this exclusive announcement, we reveal the new honorees for the first time.
They join the more than 400 names already enshrined, with our recent selections sharing something else: An awestruck gratitude at being included alongside the likes of Lucille Ball and William S. Paley, and Walter Cronkite and Oprah Winfrey. As Bill Koenigsberg, founder and CEO, Horizon Media, put it at the 2014 ceremony, “[My 88-year-old mother] didn't think I had a place in this industry. You see, mom? I’m up here now.”
The Hall was launched in 1991, the 60th anniversary of this publication, and that first class of 60 names included luminaries from Milton Berle and Joan Ganz Cooney, to Mark Goodson and Brian Lamb, to Edward R. Murrow and Frank Stanton. In each of the years since, we’ve added to an Honor Roll that stretches from the godmother of television comedy, Gracie Allen, to the godfather of television first-run syndication, Frederic Ziv, and includes the likes of Johnny Carson, Debra Lee, Norman Lear and Fred Rogers. No doubt, it’s what inspired NBC entertainment chairman, Robert Greenblatt, to observe last year during his induction, “This is kind of extraordinary for a kid who, 34 years ago, packed up a car from rural Illinois and drove to Los Angeles to be part of the entertainment industry, really not knowing anybody out there or what I was going to do.”
As we set the tables and prepare to pop the corks for the incoming class, it’s worth noting that, as in years past, our 2018 honorees represent the ever-widening breadth of this industry, including top executives, network CEOs, visionary sales chiefs, pioneering agents and familiar and respected on-air faces. And, as B&C has done 13 other times, we also honor a long-running series — in this case, for four decades — with six Peabody Awards to its name.
Along with the expected charms and quips from those in the 2018 class, a portion of the proceeds for the evening will, as it has for several years, be donated to both the Broadcasters Foundation of America — benefiting those industry colleagues and their families who have fallen on hard times — and the Paley Center.
The evening will, as always, be one of celebration, by those who have risen to an exalted post in our industry, propelled by great teams producing even greater ideas. “I look at this room, and the vast accomplishments of everybody … and I know how blessed and lucky I am to be your colleague,” Robin Roberts, co-anchor of ABC’s Good Morning Americaobserved at the 2014 ceremony. “I thank all of you … for the example each of you set in this beautiful, challenging, crazy industry that we all love.”
It’s a sentiment echoed year in and year out, perhaps rarely more poignantly than by HBO chairman and CEO, Richard Plepler, in 2013 who said, “I’m nothing but grateful that there is at least one hall of fame that will have me and that I can call home.”
That said, this year’s class will have the challenge of trying to best the likes of Ted Harbert, chairman, NBC Broadcasting and NBCUniversal, who, upon accepting his 2011 honor, declared, “I’m truly moved beyond words…but that’s never stopped me before.”
And the 2018 Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame honorees are:
20/20, ABC News’ Primetime News Magazine
Christiane Amanpour, Anchor and Chief International Correspondent, CNN
Ira Bernstein & Mort Marcus, Co-Presidents, Debmar-Mercury
Charlie Collier, President & GM, AMC, SundanceTV and AMC Studios
Cesar Conde, Chairman, NBCUniversal International Group and NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises
Carole Cooper and Richard Leibner, Agents and Special Advisers to the UTA Board of Directors
Brian Deevy, Director, Liberty Media Corp., RBC/Daniels & Associates
Gayle King, Co-Host, CBS This Morning
Greg Meidel, President, Twentieth Television
Courteney Monroe, CEO, National Geographic Global Networks
Jordan Wertlieb, President of Hearst Television
Linda Yaccarino, Chairman, Advertising & Client Partnerships, NBCUniversal
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Rob has written for Broadcasting+Cable since 2006, starting with his work on the magazine’s award-winning 75th-anniversary issue. He was born a few blocks away from Yankee Stadium … so of course he’s published three books on NASCAR, most notably, Full Throttle: The Life and Fast Times of NASCAR Legend Curtis Turner. He’s currently the special projects editor at TV Guide Magazine. His writing has appeared in The Washington Post and his origami art has been in The Wall Street Journal. He lives with his family in New Jersey and is writing a novel about the Wild West.