espnW has realigned its structure to more strongly focus its efforts on editorial strategy, drive espnW’s multimedia business and create TV integration opportunities. The espnW team will continue to be led by Laura Gentile, vice president, who is taking on the added responsibility for all espnW content. In addition to the restructuring efforts, espnW has hired Alison Overholt as editor-in-chief of espnW. Overholt will report to Gentile as well as Patrick Stiegman, vice president digital/print media, ESPN.
“We are proud of espnW’s growth, its content and the innovative initiatives we have pursued as we have established our brand,” said Gentile. “As we continue to strengthen our voice and new ways to connect with fans, we’ve identified the need to further align the espnW business vision with its editorial strategy. Creating one unified team, across business and content, will help ensure espnW’s future success serving women who love sports.”
Alison Overholt, former deputy editor, ESPN Publishing, will work on developing comprehensive content strategies through digital, mobile, social, print, and video. Most recently, she developed content strategies and editorial mission and direction as part of her own business, 183Ink, LLC, for Hearst Publishing and Seventeen Magazine, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation and NASDAQ OMX, among others. Overholt spent five years at ESPN in a variety of roles including senior editor, ESPN The Magazine and founding editor, espnW (2009 – 2010); senior editor, special projects, ESPN The Magazine (2007 – 2009); and general editor, sports business and lifestyle, ESPN The Magazine, (2005 – 2007). She has also served as a contributor to Fast Company, Fortune, O: The Oprah Magazine, Cosmo and The Wall Street Journal. Overholt has also served as an adjunct professor at New York University’s Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management since 2012. Reporting to Overholt will be espnW’s editors, and writers and contributors, and espnW’s social media director, Katie Richman. Overholt, whose first day is Monday, April 14, will be based at ESPN’s headquarters in Bristol, Conn.
“Alison rejoins ESPN bringing her passion and creativity, a keen intellect and an understanding of the ESPN culture,” added Gentile. “Her experience will help drive espnW’s mission of serving women who love sports and inspiring and engaging them every day.”
Overholt said, “I am thrilled to be rejoining the company. The espnW team has tremendous momentum, and I’m looking forward to working with this talented group to unify our voice across all our platforms.”
Carol Stiff, who in 20-plus years at ESPN has become one of the most influential people in women’s college sports, will take on new expanded responsibilities focused on driving espnW’s multimedia business and creating TV integration opportunities across ESPN networks, within studio and live event programming and across The Walt Disney Company. Stiff, who will assume the new role of vice president, multimedia strategy and integration, will also work closely with ESPN on-air talent and drive opportunities for espnW across ESPN3, WatchESPN, the SEC Network and ESPNU. Stiff who joined the espnW team in February 2013 as vice president, content program and integration, will now report directly to Gentile.
espnW’s mission is to serve women as fans and athletes. espnW.com provides an engaging environment that offers total access to female athletes and the sports they play, takes fans inside the biggest events, and shares a unique point of view on the sports stories that matter most to women. Founded in July, 2010, espnW lives across television, films, events, digital and social platforms. The annual espnW: Women + Sports Summit is the leading event of its kind in the sports industry. The Women’s Sports Foundation is a charity of choice for espnW.