ESPN Promotes Stiff to VP, Programming & Acquisitions

Carol Stiff has been promoted from senior director to vice president, programming & acquisitions, in ESPN’s programming department. Stiff joined ESPN in 1990.

Stiff’s responsibilities include the programming acquisition and scheduling for a variety of sports on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU, including women’s NCAA basketball, NCAA championships (the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship, Frozen Four, College World Series and Women’s College World Series), WNBA, and professional softball.

“Carol is a passionate and creative champion for women’s sports in general and women’s basketball in particular,” says Burke Magnus, SVP, college sports programming, ESPN. “We are fortunate to have her leading ESPN’s efforts in these areas.”

As a member of ESPN’s employee committee in support of The V Foundation for Cancer Research, Stiff has been a strong supporter of ESPN’s efforts to benefit The Foundation. She was instrumental in the development of Jimmy V Week and in raising awareness for the Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund in partnership with The V Foundation. In addition, Stiff has been a vital contributor to The Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund via the programming initiative “February Frenzy” on ESPN networks, among other efforts.

Stiff began her career with ESPN as a program planner in 1990. She received a promotion in 1997 to program planner II, and, in 2000, to senior program planner.

In 1988-89, Stiff was the first assistant women’s basketball coach and recruiter at Brown University after serving as head women’s basketball coach and physical education instructor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., from 1985-88. Stiff began her coaching career at Western Connecticut State University, where she served as head field hockey coach and assistant women’s basketball coach (1983-85). She also worked as a part-time elementary school physical education teacher.

Stiff was inducted into the Connecticut Basketball Hall of Fame in April 2005; was named the Top Advocate for Women’s Basketball by the Tampa Tribune in 2008; and in 2009, Sports Business Journal recognized her as one of the most influential executives leading the way in women’s sports.

Stiff graduated from Southern Connecticut State University in 1983 with a Bachelor of Science degree in physical education. While in school, she competed in both basketball and field hockey. In 1989, Stiff received her master’s degree in human performance/physical education from SCSU. She is a native of Bernardsville, N.J.