IMMORTALS Inductee: Janene Drafs

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30 Years At KOMO

Janene Drafs joined Fisher Broadcasting in 1986 as a KOMO-TV sales and marketing assistant and today is general manager of the Sinclair Broadcast Group in Seattle.

Her career with Fisher evolved though the years as she held titles that included senior account executive, director of business solutions, local sales manager, general sales manager, vice president and station manager and finally VP/GM, as of September 2012.

A signature accomplishment was managing the transition from the family owned Fisher Communications to the industry-leading Sinclair Broadcast Group, based in Baltimore. Connecting people with content everywhere is Sinclair’s vision. Janene exemplifies that in the Seattle media market, whether aggressively driving audience, providing a best-in-class customer experience or launching new products in content or sales—she can be found leading the charge.

She also led the staff through the tragic crash of the KOMO helicopter in 2014 and the passing of two Seattle media legends and KOMO-TV alums, Kathi Goertzen and Ken Schram.

As general manager, she oversees KOMO-TV, the ABC affiliate in Sattle, KUNS-TV, the Seattle Univision affiliate, and radio stations KPLZ, KOMO AM/FM and KVI. She is recognized as a strong leader, but a team player, with an eye for finding and developing talent.

She is the first female GM in the history of KOMO-TV and played a pivotal role in launching the Univision affiliate in Seattle. In addition, she has expanded the TV and radio news operation, brought back UW Husky football to KOMO AM/FM, helped bring the Sounders FC (in Spanish) to KUNS-TV and launched Seattle Refined, a new half-hour TV show and lifestyle website.

Janene is active in the community and has served on the boards of the  Seattle Advertising Federation, Washington Business Week and the MADD Washington State Advisory Committee. She currently is serving on the board of the Washington State Association of Broadcasters. Perhaps most importantly, she was a 20-year member of the Kid KOMO Band, singing with Steve Pool as Jimi Hendrix and Eric Johnson as (The Boss) Springstein. Who said you can’t accomplish all that she has and still have some fun?

Drafs is a Pacific Northwest native and graduate of the University of Washington with a B.A. in advertising communications. She has been a featured speaker at the Foster School of Business as well as Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film and Media Arts. She is married and the mother of two daughters.