Honoring the Past, Looking Ahead

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The Cable Center this year will induct seven industry titans — figures whose contributions have shaped the cable sector into what it is today — into its Cable Hall of Fame.

Among those taking center stage Oct. 27 are a policymaker, a programming leader, three operators and a storyteller. Induction into the Hall of Fame — part of this year's Cable Connections Week in Denver — is one of the industry's most exclusive and highest honors, said Cable Center CEO Larry Satkowiak.

This year's honorees are Char Beales, president and CEO of the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing; Matt Blank, chairman and CEO of Showtime Networks; James Cownie, co-founder and past president of Heritage Communications; Robert Hughes, founder of Prime Cable; Tom Rutledge, chief operating officer of Cablevision Systems; Bernard Shaw, CNN anchor emeritus; and Tom Wheeler, managing director of Core Capital Partners.

Each year, Hall of Fame honorees are selected by an anonymous committee of cable executives based on their leadership, innovation and contributions to the people, communities, organizations and institutions served by cable telecommunications.

Since 1998, 71 men and women have been honored as members of the Cable Hall of Fame. Last year, The Cable Center created a permanent exhibit showcasing each honoree and his or her accomplishments.

“This group of honorees has taken our industry to the next level, and they continue to innovate and succeed in today's changing media world,” Satkowiak said. “Every year, I am impressed by the caliber of honorees and the impact they have had on the cable industry. I love coming up to the Hall of Fame exhibit now and again and reading about the important contributions these people have made to the industry.”