Pat Mitchell is a lifelong advocate for women and girls, known for her work as a journalist, producer, television executive, and curator. Throughout her career, she has made the representation of women’s voices and stories, and the mentoring of women into leadership positions, the central mission of her work.
In 2011, Mitchell partnered with TED Talks to co-curate TEDWomen, a global conference focused on women. She continues to serve as the editorial director of TEDWomen, which will be held this year in San Francisco on Oct. 26–28.
Mitchell is the former president of CNN Productions, where she executive produced hundreds of hours of documentaries and specials that have received 35 Emmy Awards and five Peabody Awards. In 2000, she became the first woman president and chief executive of PBS. Mitchell also served as president and CEO of the Paley Center for Media and continues to serve as a senior adviser to that organization.
In 2009, Mitchell was inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame. The Hollywood Reporter named her one of its "Most Powerful Women in Hollywood," and she was featured in Fast Company’s special report "The League of Extraordinary Women: 60 Influencers Who Are Changing the World."
Mitchell also advises foundations and corporations on issues of women’s empowerment and leadership development as well as media relations and governance. She is the chair of the Women’s Media Center and Sundance Institute boards, a founding board member of V-Day, a member of the Acumen Fund board, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
A magna cum laude graduate of the University of Georgia, Mitchell holds bachelor's and master's degrees in English literature (watch the 2012 commencement address she gave at her alma mater). She has taught at the University of Georgia, Virginia Commonwealth University, and at Harvard University’s Institute of Politics.