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Southern California WICT Names 2019 LEA Award Honorees

The Southern California chapter of Women in Cable Telecommunications has announced the recipients of this year’s LEA Awards. They will be celebrated at a gala luncheon event on Friday, Nov. 8, at the Beverly Hills Hotel, with the red carpet beginning at 11 a.m.

Kathy Mandato, Chief HR Officer for WarnerMedia; Tina Perry, President of the Oprah Winfrey Network; Rita Ferro, President of Advertising Sales for the Walt Disney Company and Angela Courtin, Global Head of Entertainment, Media and Experiences at YouTube are the 2019 honorees.

Kathy Mandato is Chief HR Officer for WarnerMedia Entertainment which includes HBO and Cinemax, TBS, TNT, TruTV, and WarnerMedia’s direct to consumer streaming service. Prior to joining WarnerMedia Group, Mandato advised technology startups including Snap, Inc. where she served as its VP, Human Resources. Before joining Snap, Mandato was at NBCUniversal for six years, serving as Executive Vice President, Human Resources, for NBC Entertainment, Universal Television Studio, Universal Cable Productions, and HR Shared Services for NBCUniversal.

Kathy Mandato

Kathy Mandato

She joined NBC in 2011 from Comcast Entertainment Group, a programming division of Comcast Corporation, where she served as SVP, HR for three cable networks (E! Entertainment Television, Style, G4), Comcast International Media Group, and E! Online. (She had previously been at E! Entertainment in the late 90’s where she served as its head of executive search.) 

In 2001, Mandato became the Head of Human Resources for DreamWorks SKG and was part of the team that took the animation division public in 2004. She then served as Head of Human Resources for DreamWorks Animation for three years before joining Comcast and E! Entertainment again in 2007.

Tina Perry was named President of OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network effective January 2019, spearheading all day-to-day operations and creative areas of OWN. Perry, who reports to OWN Chairman and CEO Oprah Winfrey, also oversees the network’s growing digital division, as well as “WATCH OWN,” the network’s TV Everywhere app, and a variety of online content on, the network’s award-winning website.

Tina Perry

Tina Perry

Perry is a seasoned dealmaker whose exceptional leadership and business acumen provides strong direction for the network to reach and grow OWN’s diverse audience. Perry has been leading business and legal affairs for OWN and since joining the network in 2009. She has been instrumental in the network’s ongoing evolution into scripted programming. Perry led negotiations for the network’s acclaimed drama Queen Sugar created by award-winning director/producer Ava DuVernay featuring an all-female slate of directors. She also negotiated the overall deal with Lionsgate which has included one of the network’s most successful series launches to date with hit megachurch drama Greenleaf from writer/producer Craig Wright.

Most recently, Perry negotiated the deals for the network’s two new series from prolific hitmaker Will Packer, and the upcoming drama “David Makes Man” from Academy Award winner Tarell Alvin McCraney (“Moonlight”). Prior to joining OWN, Perry handled business and legal affairs for VH1 and MTV at Viacom. Before her role at Viacom, she was an associate at Cravath, Swaine & Moore, LLP in New York. While there, she represented public companies in connection with public offerings, private placements and general corporate governance matters.

Rita Ferro

Rita Ferro

As President of Advertising Sales for the Walt Disney Company, Rita Ferro leads advertising sales for the Company's entertainment, news, sports and kids linear and digital TV and Radio businesses (ABC Entertainment, ABC Daytime and ABC News; Disney Channel, Disney XD, Disney Junior, Radio Disney; Freeform, FX Networks, National Geographic Networks) and the ESPN portfolio which includes ESPN’s domestic networks, ESPN on ABC,, ESPN3, ESPN The Magazine, ESPN Radio, ESPN International, ESPN+ and ESPN Mobile. She also leads the integrated sales team for the Disney Digital Network, the Company’s online, mobile and social offerings. Additionally, Ferro directs National TV Ad Sales for ABC’s eight owned local TV stations. She has been in this role since September 2018.

Ferro previously served as President, Disney|ABC Advertising Sales and Marketing where she oversaw all advertising sales, marketing functions and ad revenue-generation strategies for the company’s entertainment, news and kids and family linear and digital TV and radio businesses, including ABC Entertainment, ABC Daytime, ABC News, Disney Channel, Disney XD, Disney Junior, Radio Disney and Freeform. She also led the integrated sales team for the Disney Digital Network (DDN), The Walt Disney Company’s online, mobile and social offerings.

Ferro began her career with The Walt Disney Company 22 years ago with ESPN International, where she held several posts including vice president, International Ad Sales leading the ESPN International Ad Sales offices in Miami, Argentina, Mexico and Brazil. She ultimately added ad sales management for Disney Media Network’s kid-driven and family-inclusive portfolio – Disney Channel, Disney XD and the then-named Playhouse Disney – in Latin America. Additionally, she has held the positions of executive vice president, Disney Media Sales and Marketing for Disney Channels Worldwide and vice president, Advertising Sales, Disneymedia+.

Angela Courtin is the Global Head of Marketing for YouTube TV & Originals. She led the partnership with Major League Baseball where YouTube TV was the first-ever presenting sponsor of the World Series. She guided the launches of YouTube Originals Ryan Hansen Solves Crime on Television, Demi Lovato’s Simply Complicated Documentary, Impulse, Ellen DeGeneres’ Show Me More Show and more.

Angela Courtin

Angela Courtin

Prior to YouTube, Courtin was Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX). In her role, Courtin was responsible for FOX’s developing and guiding overall brand strategy and audience development, overseeing on-air and off-air promotion and advertising campaigns for over 35 television series and specials annually, national media, brand partnerships, content marketing, multi-platform & affiliate marketing, design and social media for the network. She was responsible for managing a $300 million dollar budget and a staff of 150.

Previously, Courtin served as Chief Marketing Officer of Relativity Media, where she was responsible for all film, television and sports marketing initiatives as well as all branding and advertising campaigns across the company. She also oversaw Madvine, the company’s branded entertainment and consumer products arm, and Relativity Digital. In addition, Courtin launched a new digital division to grow Relativity's audience and provide brands with a fully integrated approach to marketing.

Before joining Relativity, Courtin was President of Dentsu Aegis Network U.S. where she worked across the global agency’s twenty-three stateside businesses, including Carat, McGarryBowen, Isobar, Vizeum, Posterscope, 360i and iProspect. During her tenure at Aegis she launched the global content agency, The Story Lab, and served as Chief Content Officer guiding the content strategies and practices for Fortune 100 clients. Prior to Aegis, Courtin’s roles included co-head of Integrated Marketing at MTV; Senior Vice President of Marketing, Entertainment & Content for MySpace; and associate producer on the hit HBO series Big Love.

“We are thrilled to recognize these four distinguished women for their significant accomplishments and contributions to the industry. Their drive, personal resilience, and commitment to excellence is an inspiration for all women,” said Jennifer Miles, 2019 LEA Awards Chair.

“WICT is proud to honor these inspiring women who represent the best of our industry," said WICT SoCal President Ellen Schned. "They truly exemplify the theme of the LEA Awards. and we look forward to celebrating their achievements."

The LEA Awards (honoring leadership, excellence, advocacy) event will be hosted by Emmy winning broadcast journalists Mark Steines and Erica Olson. More information can be found at