WICT Gala Honors 2009 LEAs

The Southern California Chapter of Women in Cable Telecommunications this week will present the 2009 LEA Awards, recognizing five individuals’ achievements in the areas of leadership, education and advocacy.

“The LEAs are the WICT Southern California chapter’s pinnacle event,” said Colleen Dillaway, WICT Southern California Chapter president and marketing director, Bright House Networks Bakersfield Division. “We are thrilled to be able to honor this impressive roster of leaders who have helped to transform our industry.”

This year’s honor roll includes:

  • Woman to Watch: Karla White, workforce manager for the San Diego Division of Time Warner Cable.
  • Advocate Leader: Todd Schoen, senior vice president of affiliate marketing and ad sales, Fox Cable Networks.
  • Woman of the Year: JoAnn Redden, director, video-product marketing, Cox Communications.
  • Lifetime Achievement: Salaam Coleman Smith, president, Style Network.
  • WICT Board Member of the Year: Nicole Siegel, West region affiliate-sales manager, Lifetime Networks.

The 2009 LEA Awards will be presented at an Oct. 8 gala at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif. Serving as this year’s mistress of ceremonies will be Giuliana Rancic, E! News anchor and co-star (with her husband) of the Style Network reality series Giuliana & Bill.

“The talent we will be celebrating runs the gamut of functions and aspects of the industry,” said Dillaway. “These women and this man epitomize what it means to be the best of the best.”

Woman To Watch — Karla White

White is the workforce manager for the San Diego division of Time Warner Cable, which she joined in June 2007. For technical operations at TWC, she oversees quota management, routing and dispatch for San Diego, Carlsbad, Desert Cities, Desert Hot Springs and Yucca Valley. 

She is responsible for effectively routing technicians to ensure time compliance, and providing technicians with assistance to achieve first call resolution to subscriber issues.

“Only two years into the cable industry, this [LEA Award] recognition is an affirmation that I made the right choice to move from call center workforce management to the challenges associated with providing the best service possible with a mobile workforce,” White said.

Prior to joining TWC, she was the workforce supervisor for The Automobile Club of Southern California — Emergency Road Service Division.

Of being named WICT’s 2009 Woman to Watch, White said, “I owe this achievement to all those who I’ve watched in my career so far.”

Advocate Leader — Todd Schoen

Schoen joined Fox Cable Networks as senior vice president, affiliate marketing and advertising sales in April 2004.

He and his team support affiliate sales by providing marketing campaigns, promotions and sales-support resources, along with local ad sales and other local initiatives.

Before joining Fox Cable, Schoen served as senior vice president, affiliate marketing and ad sales for ABC Cable Networks Group, and had served in the same capacity at Fox Family Channel (now ABC Family), prior to its acquisition by The Walt Disney Co. Prior to that, he was vice president of affiliate marketing for VH1.

Schoen’s work on behalf of industry organizations includes serving on Cable Positive’s board of directors and several Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing committees.

“Not only do I take great satisfaction in being an advocate for diversity, but most important, I’ve spent my career developing teams which are mainly recognized for their talent, ingenuity, passion and dedication,” Schoen said.

Woman Of The Year — JoAnn Redden

Redden, who began her cable career in 1984 as a customer-service representative at Community Cablevision in Irvine, Calif., has worked for many different MSOs through the years.

“Having grown up in cable, I have had the unique opportunity of watching our industry evolve into what it is today,” she said.

Redden joined Cox in 2000, where she now leads the Orange County, Palos Verdes, and Santa Barbara video-marketing team as director of video-product marketing.

She has earned the highest penetrations of any Cox system nationwide for digital cable, high definition and digital video recorder services; and she has been instrumental in the launch of new products such as switched digital video.

“I feel fortunate to work for a company like Cox that is not only committed to its customers but values its employees,” Redden said. “I have the privilege of working with a very talented team of marketers each and every day.”

Lifetime Achievement — Salaam Coleman Smith

As president of Style, Salaam Coleman Smith heads up a major multimedia destination for women across the globe.

She has led the network to achieve significant ratings gains and helped establish several programming franchises such as Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane, Clean House and How Do I Look? Most recently, Style launched its record-breaking hit series Ruby.

Under Coleman Smith’s leadership, Style also continues to leverage the power of its brand to promote charity and nonprofit organizations.

Her commitment to diversity in TV is evident in programming that she has overseen at Style, as well as at E! Networks, where she previously served as senior vice president of programming.

Prior to joining E! Networks, Coleman Smith spent nearly 10 years with MTV Networks.

“WICT has had a tremendous impact on my life personally and professionally, and it is such an honor to be receiving this award from an organization that I believe in so much,” Coleman Smith said of receiving this year’s Lifetime Achievement honor.

WICT Board Member of the Year — Nicole Siegel

Siegel has been affiliate-sales manager, West region, Lifetime Networks, since June 2008, having joined the company as a coordinator in 2007.

She oversees the Southwest region, which includes Texas, Oklahoma, Arizona, Arkansas, North and South Dakota, Nevada, Kansas, Nebraska and Louisiana.

Prior to Lifetime, Siegel worked as a promotional marketing manager for Elite Promotional Marketing Group.

“The LEAs was one of the first events I attended at the beginning of my cable career, so you can imagine how terrific it feels to be receiving this honor,” said Siegel. 

“Working on the Southern California WICT Board has been a wonderful experience,” she added. “I have learned so much from my fellow Board Members about the industry, and WICT has been impactful in both my professional and personal development.”