Executive Editor & Head of Event & Studio Production
During his more than three decades of work at ESPN, Norby Williamson has been involved in multiple aspects of the content and business areas of the company, with stints in programming, production and news among the many areas he has touched.
Williamson’s current role as executive vice president, event and studio production & executive editor includes co-managing ESPN’s Global Event & Studio Production group with Stephanie Druley, executive vice president, event and studio production. They each oversee parts of a portfolio that encompasses ESPN’s global event, studio and digital sport-specific content.
Williamson’s responsibilities include oversight of all of ESPN’s daily opinion, talk and news and information studio shows including SportsCenter, Get Up!, First Take, Outside the Lines and more. Williamson, who was named to his current position in September of 2017, also leads ESPN Audio, the ESPN Talent Office, the Stats and Information Group and multimedia sponsorship integration.
In addition, Williamson oversees ESPN’s baseball, combat sports, tennis, hockey, boxing and golf coverage as well as gambling, fantasy, esports and all live event coverage on ESPN+.
Williamson joined ESPN in 1985 as an employee in the company’s mailroom and quickly rose through the ranks. He worked for two years as a production assistant then served as an associate producer (1987-89), highlights supervisor (1989), producer (1990-93), coordinating producer (1993-94), senior coordinating producer for SportsCenter (1998-99), assistant managing editor and news director (1999-2000) and vice president and assistant managing editor (2000-02).
From September 2002 until October 2005, Williamson served as senior vice president and managing editor at ESPN, responsible for the day-to-day content of all news and information programming on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNEWS. He provided leadership and editorial direction for the largest television sports newsgathering operation in the U.S. From 2005-2007, he was executive vice president, studio and remote production, overseeing all domestic productions.
In 2007, he became executive vice president, production. In that role, he was responsible for all ESPN and ABC game, event and studio production work for domestic and international television and radio networks.
Williamson began a new role as executive vice president, programming & acquisitions in January 2012, overseeing all rights negotiations and managing relationships with rights holders for all ESPN entities. These included ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic, ESPN on ABC, ESPN International, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Audio, ESPN.com, ESPN3, ESPN Mobile Properties, new media platforms and more.
In 2014, he was named executive vice president, production, program scheduling and development, splitting responsibilities between management of the many production areas and oversight of programming functions such as all rights negotiations, managing relationships with rights holders and the scheduling of ESPN’s networks.
Prior to assuming management responsibilities in 1999, Williamson’s production work on select ESPN studio programs received a total of five awards, including Sports Emmy Awards for SportsCenter (1990) and NFL GameDay (1988) and three CableACE Awards for SportsCenter (1990, ’91) and NFL GameDay (1989).
Williamson earned a bachelor’s degree in corporate/video communications from Southern Connecticut State University. He is a member of the board of directors of the V Foundation.