Leadership > Hank J. Ratner
Hank J. Ratner
Vice Chairman, Cablevision Systems Corporation
Hank J. Ratner is vice chairman of Cablevision Systems Corporation, a leading media and telecommunications company with a portfolio of operations that includes a full suite of advanced digital television, voice and high-speed Internet services, and valuable local media and programming properties.
A long-time Cablevision executive, Mr. Ratner helps to set corporate direction, and is the primary executive overseeing major business partnerships and negotiations. He works closely with Cablevision's chief executive on the overall advancement of the corporation and, during his tenure as vice chairman, has guided the company through several strategic transactions, including the spin-off of The Madison Square Garden Company in 2010.
As the nation's fifth largest cable operator, Cablevision offers a full suite of Optimum-branded advanced digital television, voice and high-speed Internet services to millions of customers across the New York metropolitan area and throughout four Western states. The company also serves the New York tri-state area with compelling local content through its News 12 Networks, MSG Varsity and Newsday Media Group, and it owns and operates Clearview Cinemas, which includes Manhattan's famed Ziegfeld Theatre.
Prior to being appointed Cablevision vice chairman in 2003, Mr. Ratner spent nearly 15 years at Rainbow Media Holdings, Cablevision's former national programming subsidiary which became AMC Networks, a separate public company, after its spin-off in June 2011. During his time at Rainbow, Mr. Ratner oversaw its legal and business affairs departments before being promoted to its chief operating officer. In 2002, he became vice chairman of Rainbow and helped lead the executive management team directing AMC, IFC, Bravo, WE tv, Fuse, Lifeskool, News 12 Networks, Rainbow Advertising Sales Corporation and Rainbow Sports Networks. Mr. Ratner began working at Rainbow Media in 1988, a year after he joined Cablevision as assistant general counsel.
Throughout his tenure at Cablevision, Mr. Ratner has been influential in formulating and implementing management activity and strategic direction for all of the company's businesses. This includes a long history of managing Cablevision's entertainment programming rights and relationships, as well as its programming development efforts. In this capacity, Mr. Ratner negotiated Rainbow Media's sale of Bravo to NBC. In addition, he played a primary role in the agreement between Rainbow Media and MGM, and the establishment and management of Rainbow Media's long and fruitful partnership with NBC.
Mr. Ratner also serves as president and chief executive officer of The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG), which was majority-owned and operated by Cablevision from 1997 until 2010, when it became a standalone, public company. The sports, media and entertainment leader's businesses include renowned performance venues, entertainment properties, professional sports teams, and television networks. Mr. Ratner has been instrumental in the growth of MSG since being named its vice chairman in 2003. During his seven years in this position, he directed a number of high-profile business proceedings, including Cablevision's negotiations with Fox in 2005, which resulted in a restructuring that gave Cablevision 100 percent ownership of MSG and its properties.
Today, as president and chief executive officer, Mr. Ratner directs the overall growth strategy and day-to-day operations of MSG and is currently spearheading the transformation of The Madison Square Garden Arena, which will significantly enhance the experience of customers, athletes, entertainers, suite holders and partners. He also serves as alternate governor to the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League on behalf of the New York Knicks and Rangers.
In addition, Mr. Ratner is chairman of the Garden of Dreams Foundation, the non-profit that works closely with all areas of MSG, and he has been the driving force behind the creation and significant expansion of the charity's programs, enhancing its commitment to helping children facing obstacles throughout the New York metropolitan area.
Prior to working in the media and entertainment industries, Mr. Ratner was an associate with the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell. He received a bachelor's degree and doctorate of law with distinction from Emory University.