On May 3, the TV industry will gather at New York’s Ziegfeld Ballroom to celebrate a very special event — the induction of the 31st class of the B+C Hall of Fame in recognition of their special contributions.
In 1991, on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of Broadcasting magazine (opens in new tab), the Hall of Fame was created to honor 60 individuals who had through the course of their careers made significant contributions to TV and electronic media. The original class included industry legends ranging from Guglielmo Marconi to William S. Paley, Bob Hope, cable pioneers Bill Daniels and Dr. John Malone and C-SPAN founder Brian Lamb, to name but a few. Lucille Ball was one of three women honorees, alongside Irna Phillips, creator of the daytime soap operas Guiding Light and As the World Turns, and Joan Ganz Cooney, one of the founders of Sesame Workshop.
This year’s Hall of Fame class is a family affair: Included are Deborah Roberts, ABC News national senior affairs correspondent and contributing anchor of 20/20, and her husband Al Roker, weather and feature anchor and co-host of the third hour of NBC’s Today; as well as two of the driving forces behind family-owned Beasley Media Group: the radio group’s CEO, Caroline Beasley, and her dad, the company’s late founder, George Beasley. Joining them are Matt Bond, chairman, content distribution, NBCUniversal; Ray Cole, president and chief operating officer, Citadel Communications; Frank Comerford, CRO and president, local sales, NBCUniveral Advertising & Partnerships; Ray Hopkins, president, U.S. Networks Distribution, Paramount Global; Wonya Lucas, CEO, Hallmark Media; Soledad O’Brien, CEO of SO’B Productions and host/producer of Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien; and Rachael Ray, TV food personality and host of the syndicated Rachael Ray.
Jim Nantz of CBS Sports, who just called the last of his 18 consecutive men’s college basketball Final Fours, is this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award winner. Though he has wrapped up his career on the hardwood, he remains a vital voice, leading the network’s NFL and professional golf coverage. Our Iconic Series for 2023 is AMC’s The Walking Dead, the super-popular zombie horror series that has set basic-cable ratings records and grown into a powerful franchise.
Our Chairman’s Award recipient this year is is our late friend and long-term colleague Jim Thompson, past president of the Broadcasters Foundation of America, the group that provides support to men and women in the TV and radio industry who find themselves in acute financial need due to a critical illness, severe accident or other serious misfortune. The foundation is also a beneficiary of the Hall of Fame gala, along with the Paley Center for Media.
We are grateful to our co-hosts for the evening, Craig Melvin of NBC News and Tracy Wolfson of CBS Sports, for their contributions to the festivities. Thanks also to our in-house editorial and sales staffs at B+C; the marketing and production teams; and Future plc events leader Kelly Boon. And, of course, our event producers at Live Star Entertainment, Eric Drath and Danielle Naassana; as well as Alan Winnikoff and Carina Sayles, our PR team; and especially our sales team, led by Jessica Wolin and Jo Stanley. Finally, thanks to you, our inductees and company sponsors, alumni and attendees for your 31 years of support and generosity.
Thank you all!
The 2023 ‘B+C’ Hall of Fame Class
- Caroline Beasley
- George Beasley
- Matt Bond
- Ray Cole
- Frank Comerford
- Ray Hopkins
- Wonya Lucas
- Soledad O’Brien
- Rachael Ray
- Deborah Roberts
- Al Roker
Lifetime Achievement Award
Iconic Show Award
- The Walking Dead, AMC/AMC Plus
Honor Roll: A complete listing of all-time B+C Hall of Fame nominees (opens in new tab)
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Bill McGorry is chairman of the Broadcasting+Cable Hall of Fame, overseeing the nominating process and managing the annual awards event. With more than 30 years of experience in publishing, McGorry was instrumental in the growth of some of the most well-read business publications in the media industry, including B+C and Multichannel News. He is a board member of the Broadcasters Foundation of America.