Bridget Baker ’82 was named NBC Universal’s first president of TV networks distribution in 2006. She oversees the North American distribution of NBC Universal’s content across the cable, satellite and telecommunications industry.
A cable industry pioneer and founder of CNBC, Baker is credited with developing NBC Universal’s cable assets from inception, helping to transform the company from a dominant broadcaster of the 1980s to a 21st century multimedia powerhouse. Baker is responsible for the distribution strategy and execution of a content portfolio that includes the industry’s top-rated networks, the network-owned NBC and Telemundo stations, Olympic content on cable and broadband and video-on-demand, pay-per-view and set top box content.
In addition to her operating role, Baker is a member of the company’s Leadership Council, comprised of fewer than 1% of the top senior executives, and serves as a director on the Boards of the NBCU Foundation, the Cable Center at the University of Denver, the CTAM Educational Foundation at Harvard Business School, CablePAC, and Pitzer College. Regularly selected as one of Cable Fax Magazine’s “Top 100 Cable Executives,” Cable World’s “Most Powerful Women in Cable” and Hollywood Reporter’s “Power 100 Women in Entertainment,” Baker was twice honored by parent company General Electric Co. for her leadership and development of its global Women’s Network. In 2009, Baker was inducted into the CableFAX Sales Hall of Fame and in 2008, Baker was the only woman inducted into the Cable TV Pioneers.
At Pitzer, Baker majored in political studies and later attended George Washington University and Exeter College, Oxford for postgraduate study in politics and business. Her first position after college was as an aide to US Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK).
Baker credits Pitzer for helping her achieve success, and Pitzer’s emphasis on social responsibility for guiding her as a business leader. She has long championed diversity as a business advantage, and she leads one of the best and most diverse teams in the industry. As a director on several boards, Baker has supported groups whose mission is to create bold, self-empowered women through advocacy and leadership training. She initiated annual volunteer efforts for her own division, and in 2008, her team volunteered in New Orleans rebuilding two AIDS hospice centers ravaged by Hurricane Katrina.
Baker’s years at Pitzer exposed her to academics and campus life that were transformative for a college freshman from a small Alaska town. Baker believes that Pitzer inspired her to challenge the status quo and search for meaning and authenticity in ideas and systems. Having integrity and confidence in herself and expecting the same of others were qualities that her parents inspired, and which were strengthened at Pitzer. Baker states, “I am proud to be a part of the Pitzer College community, and I am honored to be selected for this prestigious award.