Cable TV Pioneers Names 2017 Class

The Cable TV Pioneers, which last year celebrated its 50th anniversary as a social organization honoring long-serving and accomplished executives and entrepreneurs in the industry, has named the 2017 class to be inducted at a banquet on Tuesday, Oct. 17, at The Brown Palace Hotel in Denver.

The banquet is timed to the opening of the SCTE-ISBE Cable-Tec Expo at the Colorado Convention Center (Oct. 17-20). 

The class consists of 20 individuals -- 14 men and six women -- selected from what the group said was a record number of nominees.

Read more: Fifty Years of Cable Camaraderie

They are, in alphabetical order, with their affiliated companies as announced by the Pioneers:  

Tom Adams, Charter Communications      

Matthew Blank, Showtime Networks Inc.           

Steve Brett, General Communication Inc.     

Jack Bryant, ComSonics    

Cynthia Carpenter, Charter Communications        

John Chapman, Cisco         

Anne Cowan, CTAM         

Chris Dunkeson, Comcast Corp.      

Jana Fay, C-SPAN 

Charlotte Field, Charter Communications   

Tony Finger, CommScope  

James George, American Cable Services   

Tim Gropp, Arris    

Larry Hanson, Ambit Project Management           

Dale Hopkins, GSN           

Debra Lee, BET     

Sean McGrail, NESN         

Ron McMillan, Time Warner Cable (retired)        

Jay Vaughan, DSV Services   

Richard White, consultant

In making the announcement, Cable TV Pioneers chair Susan Bitter Smith said in a statement: “Just as our industry grows broader and more robust, so do the number of nominees for the Cable Pioneers. It’s obvious from this year’s class that our membership consists of men and women who make significant contributions to the growth of our industry and our communities.”

Dinner chair Dave Fellows said, “Change growth, and celebrating this year’s induction in Denver, prior to the annual SCTE-ISBE Cable-Tec Expo, is one of the many ways we are adapting and growing. We believe our 51st Banquet will have a significant attendance and provide sponsors with a wonderful opportunity to participate in one of the top events of the industry this year.”

Read more: Cable Pioneers: 50 Facts for 50 Years

Information on the upcoming banquet is at (Interested sponsors can directly contact Lisza Gulyas at 303.527.2929 or Photos, articles and video of the 50th Anniversary celebrations are available at the site.

The Cable TV Pioneers was founded in 1966 during the NCTA convention in Miami, Fla. The original fledgling group of 21 entrepreneurs has grown to more than 700 men and women over the past 50 years. Photos, articles and video of the 50th Anniversary celebration and banquets as well as member rosters are available at the Pioneers site.

Kent Gibbons

Kent has been a journalist, writer and editor at Multichannel News since 1994 and with Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He is a good point of contact for anything editorial at the publications and for Before joining Multichannel News he had been a newspaper reporter with publications including The Washington Times, The Poughkeepsie (N.Y.) Journal and North County News.