Nick Khan’s Company-Wide E-Mail About Kevin Dunn’s Departure

Kevin Dunn, a fixture at WWE for more than 30 years, can trace his roots in the television industry to his early childhood. His father, Dennis Dunn, served as Executive Producer of Intermedia Productions, a program producer and syndicator first commissioned by Vince McMahon, Sr. to handle all WWE production beginning in 1972. After learning the ropes of the TV business at his father’s knee and through more formal education at Towson State University, Dunn was hired full-time by Vince McMahon, Jr. in 1984. He functioned as an associate producer of all domestic WWE programming from 1984-1987. During this period, Dunn had the rare opportunity to hone his producing and directing skills on some of the landmark telecasts in wrestling history. He was an integral part of the production team which brought a radical concept called WrestleMania from the drawing board to reality. This event not only signaled the dawn of the modern wrestling era, but it also served as a benchmark for the later development of the entire pay-per-view industry.

He also functioned as Line Producer on one of the most successful live events in television history, WrestleMania III, which drew an unprecedented 93,000 fans to the Pontiac Silverdome and countless more via pay-per-view. Dunn’s early successes were not confined strictly to the wrestling arena. His talents received mainstream media exposure working on projects like “The Slammy Awards,” a product of the then fledgling MTV Network in 1986. Soon after, he began working on an immensely popular late night show airing on NBC called Saturday Night’s Main Event. It was at this time that he had the unique opportunity to work hand in hand with Dick Ebersol, former President of NBC Sports. Dunn’s career growth continued as he relocated to Stamford, Connecticut in 1987 to work as the Line Producer at WWE’s new $10 million state-of-the-art TV facility. During the ensuing two years, he continued to produce all signature programming for WWE. In 1989, he was promoted to Producer, Domestic Television. In an effort to free Dunn from some of the day-to-day rigors of show production, he was promoted to Supervising Producer, Domestic Television in 1991. Under his leadership, WWE revived its successful late-night series, Saturday Night’s Main Event this time in concert with the FOX Network. This period of Dunn’s tenure also marked the beginning of WWE’s brief foray into the bodybuilding milieu when he was actively involved in the TV production of WBF Championship productions in 1991 and 1992. In 1993, Dunn was named Executive Producer of all WWE programming, both domestic and international. Through use of the latest television technology, as well as the savvy management of his staff, Dunn has created a production environment that produces seven hours of original weekly prime time programming, 52 weeks per year with no re-runs. Today, WWE produces Monday Night Raw, Friday Night SmackDown, and NXT which are ratings successes and are seen in 180 countries and heard in 25 languages. Despite his many management responsibilities, he continues to direct projects both in the studio and out in the field. He has remained Line Producer of all live WWE telecasts since 1988.

Then he left…

Nick Khan’s sent a company-wide e-mail

After 40+ years of helping to build WWE and, hands down, the best production and media unit in the entire sports and entertainment business, Kevin Dunn, will be leaving our company as of today.

Before WrestleMania 1, Kevin joined Vince at WWF. Many of us remember a pre-WrestleMania WWF – a regional wrestling company that looked like a regional wrestling company. Then we experienced WrestleMania 1, whether live, on closed circuit or years later elsewhere. It was magic. A regional wrestling company had become a global sports entertainment juggernaut. Vince led the way, side by side with Kevin Dunn. When many of us were kids standing in line waiting to play Pac-Man, Kevin was already on the road breaking his back to help build our company.

When you see our product now, there is nothing that comes close to its look or feel – 52 weeks a year, three to four times a week. It is singular and truly special. No other company can or will do that, and that is because of Kevin and our media team’s hard work, smarts and determination.

We are forever grateful to Kevin. He will always be a part of the WWE family.

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