or


[04/03/14 - 12:26 PM]
ESPN Pioneer Chuck Pagano to Retire; LaBerge Named Successor
Aaron LaBerge has been named Pagano's successor and will assume the day-to-day management of the team June 1, reporting to Pagano and ESPN President John Skipper.

[via press release from ESPN]

ESPN Pioneer Chuck Pagano to Retire; LaBerge Named Successor

Technology Chief Key Driver of ESPN's Technological Innovation from Beginning

Charles E. "Chuck" Pagano, who joined ESPN prior to its September 7, 1979, debut and whose vision and passion has driven ESPN's innovative use of technology for 35 years, will retire from the company in February 2015. Aaron LaBerge, who rejoined ESPN in 2013 as senior vice president, technology and product development, has been named Pagano's successor and will assume the day-to-day management of the team June 1, 2014, reporting to Pagano and ESPN President John Skipper. Pagano will remain in an advisory role in order to effect a smooth transition.

Pagano, ESPN's executive vice president, technology since 2005, was given the added title of ESPN's first chief technology officer in 2011 with added duties including advising other divisions across The Walt Disney Company on technological developments. Under his leadership and guidance, ESPN has built industry leading facilities at its headquarters in Bristol, Conn, its Los Angeles production center and around the world. This May, ESPN will launch Digital Center 2 in Bristol, a 195,000-square-foot facility featuring numerous technical firsts. Over the years, Pagano's contributions have made ESPN the leader in marrying cutting-edge technology to unparalleled content across a variety of media platforms.

"Quite simply, Chuck Pagano personifies ESPN - its entrepreneurial spirit, its creative passion and its focus on the people who make it all happen - and we would not be what we are today without him," Skipper said. "I am personally grateful for his contributions and insights, and I join all ESPNers in offering an enthusiastic thank you for all he has meant to our company."

LaBerge's ESPN roots go to the very early days of ESPN.com and ESPN's initial Internet product development efforts. He is in his second tour of duty with ESPN, having left for a time to launch and operate his own consumer software and digital product development company.

"In Aaron, we have an executive well versed in ESPN's culture and history, and who is also relentlessly focused on what's next," said Skipper. "He is a visionary technologist whose experience at ESPN and also in founding and successfully running his own company gives us a huge advantage as we contemplate how the future will evolve."

Pagano's career at ESPN spans more than three decades, having joined as a technical director in August 1979, a few weeks before the network launched in 1.4 million homes. At ESPN and throughout the industry, Pagano is known as a collaborative partner, an early adopter of new ideas and techniques, and a leader who always recognized that technology starts with people.

"I've been incredibly lucky to be at a place where from Day One, people have been emboldened to break barriers and seek new ideas," said Pagano. "I've been surrounded by incredibly talented and dedicated people. I learned long ago that the best leaders let others do their best work, as long as they have the appropriate culture and motivation to innovate. Yet, for all the amazing advancements I've seen - from two-inch tape to HD - what I remain most proud of is simply our birth. The odds were against this rag-tag group of people crazy enough to work 18 hours a day, seven days a week, but we had a goal and we reached it. We envisioned what others scoffed at - an all-sports network. Everything we are today started with that."

Among his many accomplishments, Pagano's influence was critical to the company's decision to launch an HD service in 2003, well before there was industry consensus on the preferred format. ESPN's first Digital Center, under construction at the time, was re-tooled by Pagano and his team, and at launch was the most sophisticated building of its kind in the world. ESPN's second Digital Center will open in late May. LaBerge has been working closely with Pagano as a key architect of that facility.

Before joining ESPN, Pagano worked for WFSB-TV, the CBS affiliate in Hartford, Conn., as a technician from 1977-1979. The native of Waterbury, Conn., (half-) jokingly says he joined ESPN to cut his commute in half.

An avid astronomer, Pagano has received many honors for his visionary and creative approach to both technology and his approach to management, including being the recipient of the 2012 Vanguard Award for Science & Technology presented by the NCTA and induction into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame in December 2012. Most recently, Pagano was honored by SMPTE with the David Sarnoff Medal, which recognizes outstanding contributions to the development of new techniques or equipment that have contributed to the improvement of the engineering phases of television technology, including large-venue presentations. He was also inducted into the Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame in December 2013, and has won two Emmy Awards for technical achievement.

Pagano remains active in giving back to the community. Pagano currently serves on the Board of Regents at the University of Hartford, his alma mater, as well as on the Board of Advisers for the College of Engineering, Technology and Architecture. He also serves on the Tunxis Foundation Board for Tunxis Community College in Farmington, Conn., and is Chairman of the Connecticut Technology Council. He is President of the Board of Directors of The Holy Land, a grass-roots community effort to restore a sanctuary in his hometown of Waterbury, Conn.

Pagano received a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering in 1984 and a master of science degree in organizational psychology in 2007, both from the University of Hartford.

Aaron LaBerge

LaBerge first worked at ESPN for a decade, 1997 - 2007, originally as a software engineer, through Disney's acquisition of Starwave Ventures, the company that produced ESPN's early Internet initiatives. In his current role, LaBerge is responsible for oversight and strategic leadership for technology and product development for digital media and mobile platforms, and on-air production software. His teams include the production data group supporting all ESPN media, technology integration across multiple media platforms, and ESPN's technology research and development team.

In 2007, LaBerge pursued a new path as co-founder of Fanzter Inc., and served as CEO of the venture-funded consumer software and digital product development company. In this capacity, he directed the development and launch of a variety of consumer-focused Internet and mobile products.

"Chuck Pagano is one of the smartest, most curious and most loved people I know," LaBerge said. "While it is impossible to fill his shoes, I'm excited to advance the legacy of innovation that Chuck has fostered for more than 35 years. ESPN is one of the greatest American companies ever created and I am humbled to accept the challenge to lead the technology team as we shape the next wave of products and services."

He is a native of Charleston, S.C., and holds a bachelor of science degree in electrical and computer engineering from the University of South Carolina.





  [april 2014]  
S
M
T
W
T
F
S
  


· SHOWATCH
(series past and present)
· DEVWATCH
(series in development)
· MOVIEWATCH
(tv movies and mini-series)





[07/24/14 - 02:01 PM]
NBC to Wrap "Crossbones" Run on Saturday, August 2
The show's planned installments for Friday, August 1 and Friday, August 8 will now air on Saturday, August 2 starting at 8:00/7:00c.

[07/24/14 - 01:42 PM]
FOX Sports Delivers 23 Hours of Live Coverage from "Hot August Nights" Auction Presented by Barrett-Jackson
Bob Varsha leads a seven-member broadcast team, which includes Mike Joy, Steve Magnante, Ralph Sheheen, April Rose, Justin Bell and Tom Jensen.

[07/24/14 - 01:20 PM]
Video: "Legends of TV Land" Panel Reveals Sneak Peek of Upcoming Animated Episode of "Hot in Cleveland" - Featuring Zombies!
Said installment airs next Wednesday, July 30 at 10:00/9:00c on the cable channel.

[07/24/14 - 01:20 PM]
Series Premiere of FX's Newest Original Comedy Series "Married" Pulls in 1.5 Million Total Viewers and 1.1 Million Adults 18-49
FX spins the numbers for Thursday, July 17.

[07/24/14 - 12:30 PM]
Video: USA Network Unveils "Dig" at Comic-Con(R)
The channel also announced a first of its kind activation with Snapchat, inviting fans to #DIGDeeper with a social media scavenger hunt for the mysterious DIG symbol.

[07/24/14 - 12:01 PM]
Brand New Christmas Special, "Toy Story That Time Forgot," Pixar Animation Studios' Second New Special for Television Featuring Your Favorite Characters from the "Toy Story" Films," To Air December 2 on ABC
Tom Hanks and Tim Allen will once again reprise their roles from the films.

[07/24/14 - 10:53 AM]
"Oprah's The Life You Want Weekend" Announces Amy Purdy to Join Multi-City Tour This Fall
Purdy, a Paralympic Bronze Medalist snowboarder and "Dancing with the Stars" finalist, will join Oprah on stage for Toyota's "Standing O-Vation," which will recognize extraordinary people in communities around the country.

[07/24/14 - 10:03 AM]
FX Unleashes "The Strain Transformation" App
Fans can discover what will happen when an ancient parasitic plague enters their system and transforms them into a monstrous vampire.

[07/24/14 - 10:03 AM]
Jerry Seinfeld's "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee" Releases New Series of Vignettes Called "Single Shots"
The first episode, premiering today, is titled "Donuts" and includes scenes of various comedians including Tina Fey, Sarah Silverman and Brian Regan talking to Jerry about the popular fried dough confections.

[07/24/14 - 09:43 AM]
Nickelodeon and USAopoly Partner to Create Exclusive Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles-Themed Monopoly(R) Games
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Edition allows fans of Nickelodeon's current TV show to vie for 22 popular locations found throughout the CG-animated series.

[07/24/14 - 08:39 AM]
Wednesday's Broadcast Ratings: "Got Talent" Puts NBC Back on Top
The Peacock's summer franchise expands originals to Wednesdays with a victory in both total viewers and adults 18-49.

[07/24/14 - 07:47 AM]
CMT's Highest-Rated Series "Party Down South" Earns Its Highest-Rated Episode Ever, Up Double Digits
CMT spins the numbers for Thursday, July 17.

[07/24/14 - 07:47 AM]
CBS Sports to Broadcast Notre Dame vs. Navy in Prime Time on Saturday, November 1
The Notre Dame vs. Navy game caps off a college football tripleheader as the Network also will broadcast an SEC match-up featuring Florida vs. Georgia at 3:30 PM, ET.

[07/24/14 - 07:02 AM]
"Fashion Rocks(R)," A Live Concert Celebrating the Powerful Relationship Between Fashion and Music, Returns to CBS on Tuesday, Sept. 9
Afrojack, The Band Perry, Duran Duran, KISS, Miranda Lambert, Jennifer Lopez, Nico & Vinz, Rita Ora, Pitbull and Usher are among those slated to perform.

[07/24/14 - 06:29 AM]
Syfy and Philips Announce First Ever Transmedia Lighting Experience for "Sharknado" and "Sharknado 2" In-Home Screening
The Syfy Sync app will feature a specially designed "light track" - a visual soundtrack - that adds a heightened layer to the movie-watching experience.