Full Name
Chris McCarthy
Job Title
President and Chief Executive Officer
Paramount Media Networks
Speaker Bio
Chris McCarthy is President and CEO of Paramount Media Networks with global oversight of Paramount+, unscripted entertainment and adult animation, and a portfolio of iconic brands like MTV, Comedy Central, VH1, CMT, Smithsonian and more, as well as the three time Oscar® nominated MTV Documentary Films and the award-winning MTV Entertainment Studios with a roster of #1 hits that includes: Yellowstone, South Park, RuPaul’s Drag Race, The Challenge, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, and Jersey Shore to name a few.
McCarthy is a creative business leader with endless capacity to radically reinvent businesses at critical moments. Appointed President of MTV in 2016, McCarthy defied expectations and quickly returned the brand to #1 with young audiences (p18-34) and transformed the business by growing the social footprint to over 750 million followers worldwide.
As a social transformer fueled with a passion for social causes that bring about meaningful change, McCarthy spearheaded the creation of ‘Vote Early Day’, a new national holiday that drove record youth turnout in the 2020 U.S. Election. He also launched a ‘Mental Health Coalition’ of more than 1,400 business, government agencies and cultural leaders, which collectively created the first ever ‘Mental Health Action Day’ another annual holiday and the first ever ‘Mental Health Storytellers Summit’ alongside major media companies to reimagine the role content can play to drive behavioral and cultural change through conversations and, ultimately, inspire action to tackle the growing mental health crisis.
Having started at Viacom in 2004 as a freelancer, McCarthy is known for his successful track record of establishing “creative led cultures”. He credits his accomplishments to always seeing obstacles as opportunities for reinvention to deliver outstanding business results, prioritizing diversity, equity & inclusion and working with young audiences who challenge norms and inspire action.
The recipient of three Oscar nominations, multiple Emmy® Awards and two Peabody® Awards, McCarthy grew up in a working-class family in Philadelphia, the first to graduate from college, earning a B.S. with Honors in Commerce and Engineering from Drexel University and an M.B.A. from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
McCarthy is a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, the Executive Champion of the BEAT+, Paramount’s Black Employee Affinity Group, and a member of the Peabody Board of Directors.
Chris McCarthy