Comcast Corp. Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts will have to find room on his mantel for yet another major industry award after this year’s Cable Show, where he and BendBroadband CEO Amy Tykeson will be honored as recipients of the Distinguished Vanguard Awards for Leadership.
“Receiving the Vanguard Award is the ultimate honor in cable,” Mr. Roberts said. “This is particularly meaningful to me because I have spent my entire professional life in the cable industry and have the good fortune to follow in my father’s footsteps in accepting this award. Over the years Comcast’s growth has been truly remarkable; it is a true testament to the strength and vitality of the cable industry.”
Mr. Roberts has received an impressive list of industry honors, including being inducted into the Cable Television Hall of Fame in October; being named one of America’s top CEOs for the fourth straight year by Institutional Investor earlier this year; being honored by the National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications for his commitment to diversity; and being cited for leadership by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America.
His humanitarian work earned him the 2004 Humanitarian Award from the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the Steven J. Ross Humanitarian Award from the UJA Federation of New York.
He was listed by TelevisionWeek as one of the television industry’s “12 to Watch” in January 2004, soon after Comcast acquired AT&T Broadband to become the nation’s largest cable operator.
Under Mr. Roberts’ leadership, Comcast has grown into a Fortune 100 company with $22.3 billion in annual revenues, 24.2 million customers and 90,000 employees. But his priority has never been to be the biggest.
“You can’t fall in love with size,” he told TelevisionWeek after the AT&T acquisition. “You have to execute. That focus is the key to our success.”
Mr. Roberts is serving his second consecutive term as chairman of the board of directors of NCTA. He also was chairman from 1995-96, when the landmark 1996 Telecommunications Act was signed into law.
He is a previous two-term chairman of CableLabs, the research and development consortium for the cable industry.
After serving as Comcast president and CEO, Mr. Roberts became chairman in 2004 after his father, company founder Ralph Roberts, stepped down.
Brian Roberts, 47, is a graduate of the Wharton School of Finance of the University of Pennsylvania and lives in Philadelphia with his wife, Aileen, and their three children. He is an all-America squash player and earned a gold medal at the Maccabiah Games in Israel in 2005 as a member of the U.S. squad, to go along with silver medals in 1981, 1985 and 1997.