Skip to Content



Here's What the First Female Network President Has to Say About Gender Barriers

January 12, 2017 00:00 AM UTC
- Updated September 25, 2020 17:08 PM UTC

Kay Koplovitz founded USA Networks in 1977.

Pleasure meeting you. What do you-- want me to look directly at you? OK, great. My name is Kay Koplovitz, and I am the co-founder and chairman of Springboard Enterprises and the Springboard Fund. How do you feel being a woman has influenced your career path? In my career, I faced many situations where women were not accepted. At Augusta National Golf Club, where I had a contract, women were not allowed to go to the second floor club. That sounds simple, but you're excluded from the club of people who are running something that's important in television coverage. You just find your way around things. I was never thinking that it was going to be a barrier for me. I was going to find a way around it, because I knew, to be successful, I would have to. And so I never really looked at it as a barrier, I just looked at it as something I-- you know, a challenge. I think it was very natural for me to expect myself to be successful in business. I at one time produced television for WTMJ in Milwaukee. And I realized that people thought that I had perhaps reached the pinnacle of my career, because they had never had women producers. And they just didn't quite understand that wasn't it for me. That I didn't want to be the manager of the TV station. That I didn't want to be the President of the Milwaukee Journal that owned the TV station. I wanted to be the president of NBC. You know, you have to draw the picture for yourself of what you believe you want to really do and not let other people define you. It's one success after another that really gives you confidence, I think.