Chairman, Showtime Networks
MATTHEW C. BLANK, in a career spanning three decades, has made a significant and indelible mark on the cable television industry. Mr. Blank has been with Showtime since 1988, assuming the position of President and Chief Operating Officer in 1991, followed by President and CEO, and then Chairman and CEO in 1995. Prior to that, he served as Executive Vice President, Marketing, Showtime Networks Inc., where he oversaw all of the network's consumer marketing, creative services and public relations functions. Before joining Showtime, Mr. Blank worked for Home Box Office Inc. for 12 years, departing as Senior Vice President of Consumer Marketing.
During Mr. Blank's tenure at SHOWTIME, he has helped transform the network into one of the most successful premium channels in the industry. Among the critically-acclaimed series are WEEDS, which has been nominated for four Golden Globe® awards, BROTHERHOOD, THE L WORD®, SLEEPER CELL: AMERICAN TERROR, DEXTER and most recently, THIS AMERICAN LIFE. In April, the network will premiere the highly anticipated original series, THE TUDORS, starring Jonathan Rhys-Meyers as a young King Henry VIII.
Other groundbreaking projects include such series as SOUL FOOD, QUEER AS FOLK and films like OUR FATHERS, REEFER MADNESS, THE LION IN WINTER, SOLDIER'S GIRL, BANG BANG YOU'RE DEAD, THE DAY REAGAN WAS SHOT, DIRTY PICTURES and THE BABY DANCE, among others. In addition, SHOWTIME has distinguished itself by airing provocative and controversial projects including THE REAGANS, THE BELIEVER, LOLITA, MORE TALES OF THE CITY, BASTARD OUT OF CAROLINA -- among others -- that television audiences would not have had the opportunity to see. The network has also produced several films that had a pre-SHOWTIME theatrical release, including DOWN IN THE DELTA and the Oscar®-winning GODS AND MONSTERS. Additionally, SHOWTIME has been repeatedly voted "Network of the Year" by the World Boxing Association, International Boxing Federation and the World Boxing Council.
Mr. Blank is active in numerous industry associations. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the National Cable Television Association (NCTA). Mr. Blank's service to the National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC) and Cable Positive are also among his many distinctions.
While at Showtime, Mr. Blank has garnered many awards, including the NCTA's prestigious Vanguard Award for Marketing in 1991 and the Vanguard Award in the Programming category in 1999. In 1997, he received the second annual GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) Fairness Award. In 2000, he was honored with the Corporate Award from the National Corporate Theatre Fund for the network's presentation of "DEATH OF A SALESMAN." Also in 2000, Mr. Blank received the "Corporate Vision Award" from the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center. In 2001, he was awarded a proclamation at the 2001 Pride Awards at City Hall in New York City, and he received the "Courage Award" from New York's Anti-Violence Project. Also in 2001, he was the recipient of People For the American Way Foundation's prestigious "Spirit of Liberty" award at its 17th annual gala.
In 2003, he was honored with the UJA-Federation of NY's Entertainment Media & Communications Division Award and the "Friends of NAMIC Award" from National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications. For 2007, SHOWTIME is pleased to lead all nominees with the most NAMIC Vision Award nominations. Mr. Blank also received the 2003 Grand TAM Award from the Cable and Telecommunications Association for Marketing, the organization's highest honor. In March of 2004, he was honored by Cable Positive with the Joel A. Berger Award for his contribution to the fight against AIDS. In October 2004, Mr. Blank was presented with the Lifetime Visionary Award by the Israel Film Festival. In April 2005, Mr. Blank was honored at the Playwrights Horizons' Board of Trustees High Standards Annual Gala Benefit. This past April, Mr. Blank was also honored by the T. Howard Foundation for his and SHOWTIME's efforts in support of diversity. In April, 2007, Mr. Blank is being honored by The Innocence Project for SHOWTIME'S production of the award-winning documentary, AFTER INNOCENCE, which made a significant contribution to advancing an understanding of the plight of the wrongfully convicted.
In addition to his numerous accomplishments within the industry, Mr. Blank is a Trustee of the Harlem Children's Zone, is on the Board of Directors for the Creative Coalition, PENCIL (Public Education Needs Civic Involvement in Learning), and is a Trustee of the American Museum of the Moving Image.
Mr. Blank is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business, and he holds an M.B.A. from Baruch College. He resides in New York City with his wife, Susan McGuirk, and their children, Meredith and Gordon.