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December 04, 2013

From the Chairman

Hayma Washington, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

To say that television changed my life is not an exaggeration.

This industry has allowed me to travel the world, meet extraordinary people and even win some awards. I’m very proud of my seven Emmys.

But without question, one of the high points of my career has been serving as Television Academy chairman. It has been a privilege to help guide this organization during a period of dynamic change, and I am proud of what our leadership has accomplished during that time.

As I reflect on the past two years, I am pleased to note many positive steps within the Academy, beginning with a review and revision of our bylaws and code of conduct. We also introduced many new categories in the Emmy Awards competition, including music supervision and casting for reality series.

When we heard from members and programmers that they wanted additional FYC events to provide voters and creators more opportunities to engage prior to the balloting period, we increased the number of FYC events from 61in 2017 to more than 100 this year, opening up weekends and allowing more than one event on a single night.

In addition, several peer groups created new paths to membership for industry professionals who previously were unable to join our organization, helping to drive our overall membership to more than 25,000 for the first time.

Other memories include “A Conversation with Tyler Perry” — our first-ever membership event in Atlanta, which filled every seat in the house — and seeing young people from the Television Academy Foundation’s internship program included in this year’s Primetime Emmys telecast.

And, of course, I am delighted that the Academy and representatives from ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC reached an agreement to extend our contract with the four broadcast networks to televise the Primetime Emmys through 2026. With this accomplished, the Academy can concentrate on expanding support for all who work in television and helping to shape the future of our medium.

As I contemplated whether to seek a second term, I was pulled in two directions: a desire to return to my work as a producer and a sense of mission about the important work being done at the Academy.

Because I have great confidence that the Academy is in a strong position to move forward under a new chairman, I decided to reengage in the production world, where so many exciting things are happening. Working as a producer will allow me to advocate in a more immediate and personal way for inclusion in our industry by creating content and opportunities for people from diverse backgrounds to share their talents and advance their own careers. I also plan to remain an engaged and enthusiastic Academy member.

At this moment of transition, I extend sincere thanks to the many people who helped to make my term as chairman such a pleasure and a privilege. Among them are my fellow Academy officers, governors and staff and the family, friends and colleagues who supported and encouraged me every step of the way.

I wish you all the best in the new year and beyond, and I am grateful for the opportunity to have served this organization and the industry that means so much to all of us.

Hayma Washington
Chairman and CEO Television Academy

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