Paxton K. Baker is the Executive Vice President and General Manager of Centric (formerly BETJ), a BET and MTV network targeting African American and multicultural adults. Baker is also President of BET Event Productions, which produces music festivals, TV awards shows, specials and concerts throughout the world. He has produced numerous television shows and home videos and released over 40 DVD and CD titles.
In 2006 Baker was appointed Chairman of the Viacom Marketing Council where he leads over 35 senior marketing and sales executives across all Viacom properties, focusing on training, best practices and strengthening brand partnerships. In 2008 he co-founded the Viacom Programming Council, composed of senior programmers from BET Networks, MTV Networks and Paramount Pictures. Baker is also a member of the Viacom Corporate Responsibility Council. In July 2006, he became a founding partner and minority owner of the Washington Nationals a Major League Baseball team.
As the General Manager of Centric, Baker has led programming initiatives that continue to win numerous awards, including a local Emmy Award, a GLAAD special recognition award for “fair and inclusive” programming, a NAMIC award for the show “My Two Cents”, a NAMIC Vision Award for the series “Lens on Talent”, and multiple Telly Awards. He has also produced two Grammy nominated solo albums (BeBe Winans' “Live and Up Close” and “Cherch”). Baker was also the Executive Producer of the 2003 and 2004 Source Awards, and is the Executive Producer of the BET and Centric’s Soul Train Music Awards, the second highest rated special on BET Network for 2009 and 2010.
Baker is Chairman of The United States Congressional Award (The US Congress’ only official designated charity), and sits on the boards of The United States Senate Preservation Trust, Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, Asia Jazz Festival Organization and the Military Bowl (a BCS Game). Prior to joining BET (first as a consultant, then as GM in 1999), Baker was President and Founder of PKB Arts & Entertainment, which was incorporated in 1988. The company produced and booked talent for the Aruba Jazz and Latin Music Festival; the Amsterdam Drum Jazz Festival; Trinidad Pan Jazz Festival; and toured acts such as Gloria Estefan, Herbie Hancock, Carlos Santana and Wynton Marsalis throughout the Caribbean, Africa, South America and Europe. PKB Arts and Entertainment was purchased by BET in April 2000, retaining Baker as President of the newly formed company, BET Event Productions. The company has produced events in the following locations: Anguilla, Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Ghana, Jamaica, J&R Music & Computer World (New York City), Iceland, South Africa, and the Turks and Caicos Islands, as well as St. Lucia, which is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its jazz festival in 2011.