Editor’s Letter: Adweek Rolls Out Hot List, Expands Adcolor Partnership

Recognizing the best in media and introducing new franchises to honor mentors that inspire and guide them

Our Hot List has evolved from a magazine awards franchise to publishing, digital and TV/video honors, too.

As media companies and the content they produce continue to move away from singular platforms to a smorgasbord of omnichannel offerings, Adweek’s coveted Hot List has evolved from a magazine awards franchise to publishing, digital and TV/video honors as well.

There is no better example of mastering the omnichannel experience than Adweek’s Media Visionary Ellen DeGeneres, who rose from her early days as a stand-up comic to entertainer, TV host, producer, activist and cultural icon. The secret to her success may lie in her oft-said credo “Be kind to others,” and in speaking to DeGeneres it’s clear she lives and breathes this every day. With DeGeneres’ popularity exploding, she smartly extended her growing media empire online, rolling up all her digital assets into the Ellen Digital Network. You can read more on EDN from staff writer Sara Jerde.

We have too many Hot List awards to list here (perhaps you’ve heard of Fortnite HQ and Netflix’s Queer Eye?). More than a few share the same cross-channel sensibility as DeGeneres, including Bloomberg LP’s Businessweek and its hot new social news ticker, TicToc. Digital’s Executive of the Year, AT&T’s Xandr CEO Brian Lesser, is just another example. At Xandr, Lesser is committed to creating the best content with the best distribution network.

Meanwhile, TV’s Executive of the Year, former Scripps Networks chief Kathleen Finch, landed on top of the merger with Discovery Communications in her new role as chief lifestyle brands officer overseeing a slew of channels including HGTV, Food Network and TLC. Publishing’s Editor of the Year, The New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet, also has had a banner year, breaking daily must-read Trump news, as well as helping to create societal shifts in the way men and women interact, with its outstanding #MeToo coverage.

None of these talented media executives got where they are on their own steam. Leaders across the brand marketing ecosystem rely on supporters and mentors to both inspire and guide them. For several years in September, Adweek has published a special section in partnership with Adcolor, the premier nonprofit organization dedicated to celebrating diversity in creative industries, in conjunction with its annual Adcolor conference and awards.

Today, Adweek and Adcolor are proudly announcing an extension of its longtime partnership, creating two new platforms for 2019 to further recognize and honor the accomplishments of diverse talent. In April, we will publish and celebrate the inaugural Champions list, which will honor those in media and marketing who are committed to mentoring and reaching back. Later, in September, the Adweek-Adcolor partnership will be further extended with the inaugural Vanguard Award to be presented at the 2019 Adcolor Awards. That honor will recognize a public figure or celebrity who uses his or her power to champion a cause or challenge the status quo for future generations of diverse talent to advance and excel. The Vanguard honoree also will appear on the cover of Adweek.

We hope these new initiatives help light a fire and in turn become a catalyst for real and lasting change.

This story first appeared in the October 15, 2018, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.