Years in Industry: 30+
Education: BA, political science; University of Richmond
As the COVID-19 pandemic ignited, Comcast quickly pivoted and emerged as a business leader. Watson, who battled his own case of coronavirus, within a month pivoted 95% of cable call center staff to working remotely and changed safety protocols to ensure field technicians and the customers they serve were as protected as possible. The company was among the first to agree to and extend the FCC Keep Americans Connected pledge. Watson, Shell and Cavanagh’s steady hands in 2019 helped position the company as a powerhouse well ahead of the COVID-19 pandemic. Last fiscal year, Watson led the cable division to a revenue increase of 3.7% to $58.1 billion and increased total high-speed internet customers by 1.4 million, Comcast’s best result in 12 years. With Cavanagh overseeing the broader financial picture, Comcast finished 2019 with a 15% year over year increase in revenue to $109 billion. Shell moved from the film and entertainment division to the CEO post in January, with longtime Comcaster Steve Burke announcing plans to retire. He immediately put his stamp on the job, bringing theatricals to digital platforms and tussling with movie theaters in the process. Shell’s also shuffling resources to make sure new streamer Peacock can fly right out of the gate.