In a night of great speeches, it was the Cable Hall of Fame acceptance of Comcast chief Brian Roberts that yielded most of the chatter. Roberts told the crowd of 600 that his wife Aileen surprised him, appearing in Denver Wed night for the Hall festivities. Aileen is "successfully fighting" first-stage breast cancer, Roberts announced, adding that her diagnosis resulted from a visit to the home of Comcast Interactive pres Amy Banse, who is also fighting the disease. Banse urged Ms Roberts to do a self exam; Ms Roberts was diagnosed that day. "We decided to use my speech tonight to remind women and men" of the importance of self exams, Roberts said. He said both Ms Banse and Roberts are "doing well." — Another Brian, C-SPAN chief Brian Lamb, was also eloquent, urging all to read chapters 1-3 of Viacom founder Ralph Baruch’s forthcoming book, which recounts the Baruch family’s escape from Nazi-controlled France. He then praised Baruch as a free speech champion who defended the right of neo-Nazis to broadcast in the US. — Retired Cox chief Jim Robbins was hailed for his dedication to customer service, and he singled out Ellen East for her work representing the MSO. Baseball and politics were sprinkled throughout a tribute to Landmark’s Decker Anstrom, touted for unifying cable in the 80s. Stephen Colbert gave a hilarious tribute to MTV’s Judy McGrath, while Carolyn Chambers won raves for being a pioneering woman in cable. HBO tech chief Bob Zitter was feted for digitization and on Demand. — Maxwell Host: Sure we’re biased, but our Paul Maxwell did a nice job as emergency host, subbing ably for fallen sportscaster Jim Lampley, whose emergency with his artificial hip caused him to cancel literally at midnight Tues.

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