Bill Rasmussen, founder of ESPN to speak at January Series

Known as the ‘George Washington’ of ESPN and the Father of Cable Sports, Bill Rasmussen started the Entertainment and Sports Programming Network in 1979.

His vision started with a $9000 credit card advance before eventually receiving a contract by the NCAA and successfully negotiating a $1.38 million advertising deal with Anheuser Busch.

As the first 24 hour television network, ESPN has captured a global presence in 200 countries and maintains more than 100 million subscribers in the United States.

Rasmussen has been credited with several of ESPN’s biggest programs including SportsCenter, March Madness and the College World Series.

In an interview with Forbes, Rasmussen explained why ESPN will continue to stay a worldwide leader in sports.

“They’ll stay on top because of the underlying culture that has been evident since day one. They want to win and explore every new idea, every new technology, and every new nuance in the industry and most importantly they stay laser-focused on their mission: To serve sports fans. Anytime. Anywhere.”

Author of the book ‘Sports Junkies Rejoice: The Birth of ESPN’, Rasmussen today continues to speak to corporations and universities around the world on innovation, entrepreneurship and business development.

After graduating from DePauw University with a bachelor’s degree in economics, Rasmussen received his MBA from Rutgers University.

In 1994 Rasmussen was honored by Sports Illustrated as one of 40 individuals who had the greatest impact to sports over the past 40 years.

Rasmussen will speak at today’s January Series in the CFAC at 12.30 p.m.