As Telemundo Media’s Executive Vice President of Network Sports, Hidalgo oversees the network sports department, all network sports programming, acquisitions and events. He reports directly to Emilio Romano, President, Telemundo Media.
A seasoned, television executive with more than 30 years in the industry, Hidalgo has twice been named among the 101 most influential minorities in sports by Sports Illustrated magazine and one of the most powerful Hispanics in Sports by Hispanic Business and Poder magazines. In addition, Hidalgo has been recognized by the Suncoast Emmy Awards with the Silver Circle Award in 2012 for his distinguished and significant contributions to both the TV industry and the community for more than 25 years.
Most recently, Hidalgo was an integral member of the team that secured the landmark deal for Telemundo of the exclusive Spanish-language rights to all FIFA World Cup events beginning in 2015 and extending through the Qatar World Cup in 2022.
In 2006, Hidalgo negotiated and acquired the rights for five years to Chivas Rayadas de Guadalajara, the #1 Mexican league soccer club. The association brings all Chivas home games to Telemundo exclusively. In addition to this unprecedented agreement, in October 2008 Hidalgo was responsible for securing the rights to six additional Mexican league soccer clubs. The success of this coup led to the renewal of said rights for 2009. Also in 2006, Hidalgo signed an exclusive media partnership agreement with the NFL, which includes specials created for the Hispanic community during the season kickoff and Super Bowl weekends. His division has also worked closely with NBC to provide Spanish-language translations of NBC Sunday Night Football in America, the network’s premier sports property, to the Hispanic community.
Hidalgo was also responsible for acquiring the exclusive contract for the rights to the Mexican National soccer team in 2000 through 2014. Representing the premier sports franchise for U.S. Hispanics, this agreement secured all World Cup qualifying matches, as well as preparation games, exclusively on Telemundo, and has provided a decade of unprecedented success.
Hidalgo is credited for developing the very successful Titulares Telemundo, a half-hour show offering complete coverage of all major sports; “Los Triunfadores,” a biographical series on Hispanic sports champions and heroes; “Boxeo Telemundo,” a monthly boxing late-night series, the first cross-over broadcast for NBC sports, where the Telemundo production team broadcasts the NBC Boxing series in two languages on both networks; “La NBA en Telemundo”, the exclusive U.S. Hispanic broadcast of NBA games, which at the time marked the first-ever Spanish-language broadcast contract with a major professional sports league in the U.S.; “Titulares y Mas,” a sports and entertainment show and “Ritmo Deportivo,” a weekly show featuring extreme sports, travel and adventures around the world.
Between 2005 and 2008, Hidalgo was appointed to lead the Network News division as Senior Executive Vice President of News & Sports. During his tenure, he is credited with reorganizing the News division and creating the largest foreign network news presence in Mexico City.
In 2004 and under Hidalgo’s leadership, Telemundo brought the U.S. Hispanic audience 174 hours of Olympic programming in Spanish for the first time in U.S. television history with the Summer Games in Athens. In May of 2005, he was honored for that broadcast with a Sports Emmy from the National Television Academy, as one of the producers included in NBC Sports’ nomination in the Outstanding Live Event Turnaround category. Hidalgo was again at the helm of Telemundo’s coverage of the 2006 Winter Games in Torino, as well as the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing, for which he won another Sports Emmy award.
Hidalgo joined Telemundo in February 1999 as Vice President of Sports. That year he successfully broke the longtime broadcast rights monopoly in Mexico by directly securing the rights to two professional league teams in that country, and he was responsible for reuniting the award-winning sportscasting team of Andrés Cantor, Jessi Losada and the late Norberto Longo., as well as, the entire award-winning production team that currently oversees network sports productions.
Prior to arriving at Telemundo, Hidalgo was Sports Director for Univision Network where he oversaw every aspect of the sports department. Among many career highlights, he served as Executive Producer and Director for the network’s World Cup coverage in 1994 and 1998, and created the award-winning boxing series, “Boxeo Estelar.” His broadcast career began in the early 1980s as a sports cameraman at WLTV in Miami, Florida. Since that time, Hidalgo has been honored with five Emmy Awards out of 14 nominations and, in 1997, was co-recipient of the prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award. In 2004, he received a proclamation from the city of Hialeah, Florida, dedicating February 1 as the “Jorge Hidalgo Day.” In 2006 and 2008, he was recognized by the World Boxing Organization for his contributions to the sport. Hidalgo was honored by the Latin Pride National Awards for lifetime achievement in the broadcast industry in September 2007. Most recently, he was distinguished as one of the Most Powerful and Influential Latinos in Entertainment for 2011 by the Imagen Foundation, which furthers employment opportunities and positive media images of the Latino community in television and film. The same year, Hidalgo was honored with the keys to the city of Kissimmee, Florida, for his valuable contribution towards the development of the city by bringing championship boxing to the Kissimmee Civic Center. In 2011, Hidalgo was recognized with service awards by both the WBO and WBC boxing organizations as a result of his staunch support of the sport and its positive impact on the Hispanic community.
Hidalgo and his wife, Mabel, have four children: Lynette, Jorge, Stefanie and Victoria.