W. Erik Carlson
Title: President & COO, DISH
Years in Pay-TV: 20 years
Education: Bradley University
One Word that Best Describes Me: Loyal
Title: EVP, Marketing, Programming & Media Sales, DISH
Years in Pay-TV: 14
Education: Harvard University
One Word that Best Describes Me: Adventurous
Over the last year, Carlson has led his team in the execution of innovative initiatives that improved the customer service experience for nearly 14 million customers across DISH’s footprint. His team created in-house, technology-based solutions to address pay-TV consumer pain points and enhance the company’s technician experience in the field. Complementing his efforts is Schlichting, who oversaw dozens of carriage negotiations for news, sports and entertainment networks. He also completed a number of important retransmission agreements with local broadcast affiliates across the country.
The biggest innovation in pay-TV over the last year: Over-the-top television
What does the future look like for skinny bundles and flexible packaging? Consumers have demanded more choice and control over their entertainment experience, and our industry – our programming partners – must pivot to meet these needs.
Virtual reality is: Pretty cool and potentially a big opportunity
What was your first job? Generating Glengarry leads for an agent with Farmers Insurance
Favorite charity event you work with: DISH Day of Service, a companywide day of volunteering that unifies our nationwide workforce behind a single day of community outreach.
“Star Trek” celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year. So if Mr. Spock’s motto is “Live Long and Prosper,” mine is… Be Prepared
If this election year was a reality TV series, it would be called… “The Year without a Santa Claus”
What was the last costume that you wore and why? I was the Marc Antony to my wife’s Cleopatra.
My favorite hashtag is: #dishlife, which chronicles the DISH adventures of our employees
Best way to spend a Saturday night: In the mountains with family, friends and a bottle of red wine
New favorite binge: “House of Cards”
My pay-TV industry mentor and why: Charlie… because he’s Charlie. He built a Fortune 250 giant from the ground up, and he keeps the entire industry on its toes with an eye to the future of pay-TV.
Hoverboard, driverless car or drone: Driverless car
I watch the majority of programming on this device: The Hopper. Nothing beats sinking into the couch for the 10’ foot experience of your living room TV.
Favorite vacation spot: Anywhere my family goes
My typical breakfast is: Smoothie
My Starbucks order: I move between a Grande Americano and a Skinny Vanilla Latte
What does the future look like for skinny bundles and flexible packaging? Like water running downhill.
My first job: Pumping gas at a Lake Marina in Kansas
Favorite charity event you work with: Summer Search, an organization that inspires low-income students to become college-educated leaders by providing mentorship and offering life-changing experiences like the group’s summer wilderness expeditions.
If this election year was a reality TV series, it would be called… “You (Should be) Fired”
Name of my favorite Spotify playlist: I’m more of a SoundCloud guy
My personal theme song is: “My House” by Flo Rida
Favorite vacation spot: Ixtapa, Mexico