Title: President, MCTV/ACA

Years in Cable: 36

Education: BBA, The College of William and Mary (1976)

Best Advice in 7 Words or Less: Grow old, but don’t grow up.

Gessner, a tireless advocate for small- and mid-sized operators, was elected Chairman of the American Cable Association in 2014. “This is a critical time because the issues have never been tougher or the stakes higher for the independent cable community,” he said after the votes were in. With his focus on educating policymakers about the vital role the indie sector plays in the communications market and the need for policies that foster investment in their networks, both MCTV and ACA couldn’t be in better hands.

Should the industry embrace or reject “virtual MSOs” and why? Embrace. Even the industry has only the strength to delay them, not reject them.

If I had a show on YouTube it would be called… “Enjoy life outdoors instead of watching this stupid show.”

Favorite screen: Computer—spend more time in front of it than any other.

Apple iWatch or Rolex? Rolex (but I don’t have one).

If I could interrupt Kanye West just once, I would tell him… I don’t know who you are.

I wish Congress would just… stop talking about bipartisanship and do something about it.

Twitter, Instagram or Snapchat? Never use any.

My favorite newfound hobby: Cooking

If Disney hired me to reboot “Star Wars” I would… decline. The original, despite its now simple story and effects, is the original so don’t ruin it.

The technology that will most benefit cable over the next year is… fiber optics.

Favorite Cable Show memory: The “Lead Balloon” launch in Las Vegas. They forced everyone to stay outside in the broiling Nevada sun while a hot-air balloon trailing a giant plastic bag of party balloons was raised overhead. At the big moment, the bag was supposed to open and the balloons both rise and fall. Well, it just didn’t work and everyone was so hot and tired, they just shrugged and walked inside where technology and industry progress was waiting.

Desert island album: Don Henley – Actual Miles

Favorite TV show as a kid: Little kid – “Rocky & Bullwinkle”

Dish I can make and that would impress a celebrity chef: Pork chops with a mustard-wine reduction sauce.

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