Bill Rasmussen
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  • "Mr. Rasmussen was very charming, relatable and down to earth!! He was very engaging, smart and just a joy to be around. The chemistry was amazing and I feel like an old friend is leaving me when I had to say goodbye. He was just awesome and we thank him for making the experience for our student leaders so memorable!"
    -Arizona State University

  • "Only Bill can take you back, back, back, back to the beginning of the greatest success story in the history of sports television. His ideas, his enthusiasm, his fierce determination and belief in success changed the way we all watch television and televised sports today."
    -Chris Berman, ESPN

  • "This is a guy whose idea gave birth to, arguably, the most successful media story of our time."
    -Jim Miller, Author of These Guys Have all the Fun: Inside the World of ESPN.

  • "Bill has a wonderful personality and many of the attendees of the event couldn't wait to meet and network with him...the audience was very impressed. "
    -St. Peter's University

Bill Rasmussen


It is safe to say that Bill Rasmussen changed the face of sports and the face of television. His brainstorm for a 24-hour cable sports television station, born out of adversity, has become the Worldwide Leader in Sports—ESPN. Bill is the man with that dream. He founded ESPN in the summer of 1978, and had his innovative brainstorm for an all-sports cable TV network within days of his firing by the New England Whalers of the World Hockey Association on Memorial Day weekend. His idea for an all-sports cable TV network captured his imagination, and he incorporated the fledgling network on July 14, 1978. 

A lifelong entrepreneur and sports fan, Bill's innovations in advertising, sports, and broadcasting are numerous and include not only the creation of ESPN, but also the concept for Sports Center, which provides wall-to-wall coverage of NCAA regular-season and "March Madness" college basketball, as well as coverage of the College World Series. He broke the advertising barrier to cable television by signing Anheuser Busch to the largest cable TV advertising contract ever.

Bill's entrepreneurial daring, his irrepressible enthusiasm, and a dash of good luck gave the world the first 24-hour television network. Once unleashed upon sports fans, ESPN's impact forever changed the way we watch television. Bill is the author of the best-selling book, Sports Junkies Rejoice! The Birth of ESPN. Bill tells the inside story of the birth of ESPN in the book.

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