Hawkins focuses on talent management, leadership development, organizational design, succession planning, employee relations, recruitment and inclusion. He has been an instrumental player in several high-profile executive appointments including Patrice Andrews as chief of Animal Planet. Looking ahead, Hawkins is relocating to L.A., where he will lead the OWN HR function. While he gives cable high marks for diversity in terms of progress, he hastens to add, “There is still much work ahead of us to better diversify behind the camera, with our vendor relationships, as well as across creative and sales functions.

What grade do you give the cable industry on diversity and why?
I give the cable industry high marks for on-air diversity, and also for our outreach to diverse communities. That said, there is still much work ahead of us to better diversify behind the camera, with our vendor relationships, as well as across creative and sales functions.

My personal election campaign slogan would be…
Strength through leadership and inclusion

What are the television show/s – cable or broadcast – best embrace diversity?
I am especially proud of a number of recent shows incorporating diversity across Discovery’s portfolio. “I Am Jazz” on TLC is a ground-breaking representation of diversity in cable programming; bringing the real life experiences of an ethnically diverse, transgendered youth to millions of viewers in an authentic and engaging manner. Additionally, Investigation Discovery is readying the documentary “Southwest of Salem: The Story of the San Antonio Four,” which captures the story of four Latina lesbian women on the verge of freedom after numerous years in prison for a crime they didn’t commit. The story of these four women is both heartbreaking and redemptive; and another important example of the enlightening and diverse programming coming out of our industry.

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