Senior Vice President, Specials, Music Programming and News
New York, N.Y.
Television executive and producer Constance Orlando is having the time of her life as senior vice president for specials, music programming and news at BET Networks. “I love music. I have a passion for curating content and a desire for others to be empowered through an awareness of news. In this job, with a backdrop of entertainment and current events, no single day is the same. We’re challenged by what’s relevant and what’s next,” Orlando says. She speaks of her employers with pride. “The Viacom and the BET family are amazing. It’s a great network of “good people” — diverse experiences, big ideas and a strong sense in the value of culture.”
Orlando has produced popular specials, such as The BET Awards and The Soul Train Awards, which she counts among the highlights of her career at BET. While she has worked on every genre of programming at the network, she cites the greatest highlight of her tenure is her role as executive producer of “Black Girls Rock!” a show dedicated to honoring exceptional women of color around the world who stand as inspirational and positive role models.
Orlando graduated from Syracuse University with a bachelor’s degree in finance, after which she worked full time at JPMorgan Chase & Co. “On the weekends, my industry friends often invited me to work on production assignments. I discovered that I really enjoyed the work. Those experiences opened other doors,” she recalls. Orlando launched a full-service production company, CMO Productions, and partnered with rapper-businessman Jay Z to produce a direct-to-video movie soundtrack, “The Streets Is Watching.” She served as executive producer at Big Dog Films, owned by acclaimed director Hype Williams. “Just do it,” she advises aspiring content creators. “The beautiful thing about this industry now is technology. You have smartphones to create. There’s YouTube for distribution. The barriers are low. The stakes are high.”