Pac-12 Selects Murphy-Stephans To Head Networks As EVP, GM

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The Pac-12 Networks has named media industry veteran Lydia Murphy-Stephans as executive vice president and general manager.
In her new post, Murphy-Stephans, whose career has included stints at ABC, Oxygen and Madison Square Garden, will oversee the development, launch and management of the Pac-12 Networks, with an emphasis on all programming and production. Based in northern California, she will hire and manage a team to program and produce live events in virtually every sport from all 12 campuses, creating studio shows and other original programming.
Last July, the Pac-12 Conference announced the creation of Pac-12 Networks, which will include a national network and six regionals, in conjunction with Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Bright House Networks. Set for an August 2012 kickoff, the networks will mark the first time a U.S. collegiate conference or any other programmer has launched a collection of services across a variety of platforms, rather than as a singular entity. The networks hold "TV everywhere" rights, permitting subscribers to view the content outside of their homes on any digital device, including smartphones and tablet computers.
Prior to joining the Pac-12 Networks, Murphy-Stephans was founder and partner of All Access Media Partners, a multi-platform media consulting firm that provided end-to-end solutions in media, programming, production and marketing. She launched the firm in 2010 after spending 23 years in network and cable television.
A former Olympic speed skater, she began her career as a news producer for WLUC in Marquette, Mich. before joining ABC Sports to work on the network's coverage of the 1988 Winter Olympic Games. In 1994, she was elevated to vice president of programming and acquisitions at ABC, becoming the first woman in network sports TV history to be named to that level. Her duties included negotiating worldwide media rights to events, creating original programming and overseeing Wide World of Sports.
In 1999, Murphy-Stephans left ABC to become president and executive producer of Oxygen Sports at Oxygen Media, where she played a vital role in the launch of the women's-targeted network and oversaw the creation of the sports department. Seven years later, she was named executive vice president of programming and production for MSG Media, the television, radio and new media division of Madison Square Garden.
"Lydia's depth and breadth of experience is as impressive as anyone's in the media industry," said Pac-12 Enterprises president Gary Stevenson in announcing the hire. "She has been a programming leader at established networks like ABC Sports and MSG Network and led the launch of Oxygen Media when it was a start-up. She has a rare understanding and appreciation of all college sports and a passion for quality production. We are very fortunate and excited to have her leading the Pac-12 Networks."
Noted Murphy-Stephans: "I'm thrilled to be part of this new venture. The Pac-12 Networks will produce and deliver an unprecedented amount of quality content from the 12 universities. It's an amazing undertaking that will allow us to showcase each of the schools and their highly successful sports programs. Gary Stevenson and [Pac 12 commissioner] Larry Scott are two of the most accomplished executives in sports and I am excited to be joining their team and working with the Pac-12."