Katie Nolan was brutally honest. In front of a room full of many aspiring young journalists at the annual Association for Women in Sports Media conference July 30 in Miami, the Fox Sports 1 broadcaster and host of “Garbage Time With Katie Nolan” didn’t hold back.
“I’ve never been a very confident person,” she said in her keynote speech.
It was almost startling to hear coming from the vibrant, witty 29-year-old who has found success so quickly in the gruff sports media business. But there she was, genuinely happy to be at AWSM, sharing her path, giving advice, and explaining how this business is a continuing learning experience for her.
Nolan won a 2015 Sports Emmy for “Outstanding Social TV Experience” and discussed how she started out in media, making five-minute videos every day for two years in Boston. She woke up at 5 a.m., scoured the internet for news, and then headed to her real job. During this time in her early 20s, she asked her parents for green screens, lights and Final Cut Pro for Christmas. Her dedication to being successful cost her jobs, friends and boyfriends. But she told the AWSM crowd it was all worth it.
“Once I started, I wanted to be great at it,” she said.
Nolan has also come to realize how crucial it is to support other women in the business. She admitted at one point in her life, she didn’t even like women.
“The most important thing I’ve learned is the best thing we can all do for each other life each other up,” she said. “I had the mindset, ‘I don’t even like other women, I’m one of the guys.’ I look back on that now and I’m like, ‘You (expletive).’ Not all girls wear pink.
“It’s so easy to tear other women down. Men love it because we’ll keep each other out of the industry.”
Nolan also wasn’t afraid to talk about respect. She said more than anything, that’s what she wants from her peers.
“I think I’m working on getting people’s respect,” she said. “I want to gain respect of people in the industry and if I’m doing anything that’s preventing that, I want to stop.”
She truly captivated the audience and the question-and-answer period could have lasted hours. Nolan was gracious, took selfies with everyone who asked, and even gave AWSM a shoutout in a segment on her show the next week.
– Laken Litman