Helen Dimsdale is Senior Director, Cable in the Classroom (CIC), the industry’s education foundation and part of the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA). In her new role, Dimsdale is responsible for membership outreach in CIC’s migration from analog to digital and other advanced distribution platforms (www.CIConline.org). Prior to her new role, Helen championed the strategic development and roll-out of NCTA’s state-of-the-art theater (www.ncta.com/NCTATheater) to its member companies. Produced premieres of cable’s original programming and later film studio content to Washington policymakers and opinion leaders. The 105 seat 3D & HD, THX Certified theater is the centerpiece of the “Cable Multimedia Center” including a technology exhibit, studio with editing suite and web casting capabilities. Other responsibilities include directing public affairs efforts on industry-wide initiatives, producing both external and internal industry messaging, and as a spokesperson delivering varying industry positions to diverse audiences. Dimsdale produced 10 – TV Critics press tours in Los Angeles, representing 22+ cable networks, negotiating all production/vendor contracts and directing media consultants on the industry’s behalf. Key cable negotiator to TCA Board and its partners: Broadcasters and PBS (2001–2006).
Helen got her start in cable in 1995, by joining NCTA’s newly formed Program Network Policy department focusing on the program network membership developing the industry’s standards and adoption of the voluntary ratings system, still in use today. Dimsdale worked on other programmers’ regulatory proceedings resulting from the ‘96 Telecomm Act including closed captioning, video description and multicast must-carry. Prior to her employment at NCTA, Dimsdale served in the Government Relations and Public Affairs department focusing on the USTA-PAC and managing fundraising activities, for the U.S. Telecomm Association (USTA). USTA is the oldest trade association representing the Bell Operating Companies (BOC) and local exchange carriers (LEC).
Prior to USTA, she served in various management roles for Marriott International, Inc. including several DC Metro area premiere properties in the conference center and education divisions. In 1981, Dimsdale began her career as a congressional aide for the late-U.S. House of Representative Frank Annunzio [D-IL]. His chairmanships included House Administration and the subcommittee on Consumer Affairs & Coinage of the Banking & Finance Committee.
Dimsdale has filled many leadership positions within cable industry organizations including serving as the 2004 President of the Washington/Baltimore Chapter of Women in Cable Telecommunications (WICT), the cable television industry’s leading advocacy organization for women. More recently, she served on the 2009 board of Washington Women in Public Relations (WWPR). She received the 2005 WICT Emerging Leader Award from WICT Washington/Baltimore and has been recognized with three WICT National Pinnacle Awards for Chapter leadership. Dimsdale is a Betsy Magness Leadership Institute Fellow (Class XVI), WICT’s flagship women’s executive leadership program.
Outside the office, Helen was an on-air jock (weekend overnight shift) at Classic Rock 94.7 The Globe (CBS Radio) in Washington, DC. A native Washingtonian, Dimsdale holds a BS, Food Science from the University of Maryland (College Park), and a MS, Information and Telecommunications Systems Management from Capitol College (Laurel, MD).