Ross LevinsohnWhen Ross Levinsohn launched his noteworthy career in digital media more than 36 years ago, he quickly gained traction and made a solid name for himself. Today, he is a respected executive leader who sits in the CEO chair at both Maven and Sports Illustrated. Because of his role at both of these established companies, Levinsohn has been able to steer them masterfully toward more profitable futures.

Maven is not a media name that the average person is familiar with, but the company is nonetheless an influential leader in the space. It provides essential services for everything from publishing and monetization to infrastructure and more to hundreds of popular brands. In fact, a few of the brands it serves are History.com, Maxim, The Street with Jim Cramer and more. You might assume that Ross Levinsohn did not change much when he became CEO at Sports Illustrated. After all, the company has a 70-year history and is a global leader. However, Levinsohn quickly identified a powerful opportunity to transform Sports Illustrated’s business model, to raise revenue and to provide a better customer experience all at the same time. His solution was to create a paywall with a subscription membership option. While non-subscribers could still access some content, subscribers now benefit from early access to content and to premium content that is not available to others.

This is among Ross Levinsohn’s most significant professional accomplishments in recent years, but it is only one of the many ways that he has impacted the industry at the many companies he has had the pleasure of working for. Levinsohn studied Communications at American University. After graduating in 1985, he worked at a few lower-level positions until he landed the prime role of Director of Production and Marketing at HBO in 1990. From there, he moved into premium spots at Google Interactive Media, Yahoo! and many other influential media companies.