Prominent John Marshall Law School alumnus Mark Pedowitz (‘78) returned to campus to interact with students and discuss his work in the entertainment industry.
In a wide-ranging chat with John Marshall Dean Darby Dickerson, Pedowitz, president of The CW Network, told the crowd how he transitioned from law to the creative side of the industry, to running a major television network. He also answered questions about steps law students can take to break into the entertainment industry, how to network effectively and the future of the television industry.
Pedowitz encouraged students to follow their passion and not be afraid to fail. “In order to be successful in the entertainment industry you have to really want it,” Pedowitz said. “You cannot be afraid to fail because out of failure comes opportunity.”
Pedowitz also shared that students need to understand the entertainment business from the inside and suggested that they apply for internships at local television stations or talent agencies to help obtain that understanding.
“We were thrilled to have Mark back on campus. He’s taken his law degree and used it in an innovative way to reach the top of his field,” Dickerson said. “I loved that he wanted to engage with current students, and that he talked with them openly and honestly. I’m looking forward to his next visit!”
Pedowitz has been a long-time supporter of John Marshall, including sponsoring one of the law school’s trial advocacy teams in the bi-annual Animal Law Advocacy Closing Argument Competition at Harvard Law School. Since 2008, John Marshall has either won or placed in the finals at the competition every year except one.
Pedowitz has been president of The CW Network since 2011. During his tenure, the network has produced many popular television shows including “Arrow,” “The Flash,” “Supernatural,” “Jane the Virgin” and “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” Before joining The CW, Pedowitz was president of ABC Studios, where he oversaw the production of television shows including “Lost,” “Desperate Housewives” and “Grey’s Anatomy,” and also served as the executive vice president of the ABC Television Entertainment Group.
Pedowitz was recently inducted into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame.