Pat Mitchell was named president and chief executive officer of the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) in March 2000. She is the first producer to head the public service broadcaster, coming to PBS from a long and respected career in commercial broadcasting and cable. She is currently the President and Chief Executive Officer of The Paley Center for Media.
In her three decade career in media, Mitchell has worked for NBC, CBS and ABC. She has also held positions as a network correspondent, a news anchor, and in the mid-eighties as a host and producer of an Emmy award winning talk program. She was also an independent producer and President of the original programming division at CNN, and was the Executive Producer for multiple award-winning documentaries and specials. Her work has earned her 37 Emmys, five Peabodys, and two Academy Award nominations. Mitchell was named Women in Cable and Broadcasting’s Woman of the Year in 2001, received the CINE Golden Eagle for Lifetime Achievement, was named as one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Television by the Hollywood Reporter, and recently received the Sandra Day O’Connor Award for leadership.
She is a Director of Knight Ridder, Inc. and Bank of America, as well a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the U.S. Afghan Women’s Council, an adviser to the Center for Public Leadership at the Kennedy School of Harvard University and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Mayo Clinic Foundation. She speaks extensively on the role of media in society, including testimonies to both the U.S. Congress and the British House of Lords. A magna cum laude graduate of the University of Georgia, with a master’s degree in English literature, Mitchell has also been awarded honorary doctorate degrees from Emerson College, Hollins University, Bloomsburg University and Converse College. She is a resident of both Atlanta and Washington, D.C. She and her husband, Scott, have six children and 8 grandchildren.