Skip to main content

School of Communication Alumni Receive Emmy Nominations

Northwestern University School of Communication alumni were among the marquee nominees—notably in the late-night TV categories—for the 2019 Emmy Awards, announced July 16.

Top among the names was Julia Louis-Dreyfus (C83, H07), who received her seventh Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series nomination for her role as Selina Meyer in HBO’s Veep. Louis-Dreyfus has won this award seven times: a record-setting six consecutive wins as Meyer and one as Christine Campbell on The New Adventures of Old Christine. She has also won one Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series award for her work as Elaine Benes on Seinfeld and three additional awards as executive producer of Veep. She has been nominated for 25 Emmy Awards overall and was a 2014 Hall of Fame honoree. She and fellow alumna Cloris Leachman (C48, H14) are currently tied for the record for most wins for a performer at eight apiece. 

The following accomplished alumni are among the crop of nominees for the 71st Annual Emmy Awards:

  • Stephen Colbert’s (C86, H11) The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on CBS was nominated for Outstanding Variety Talk Series, Outstanding Directing for a Variety Series, Outstanding Interactive Program, and Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series. Also nominated for the latter award are Jen Spyra (GC12), a frequent presence on camera, and Emmy Blotnick (C10), who is additionally a stand-up comedian. The Late Show has received 10 nominations; Colbert himself has received 35 nominations and nine Emmy awards.
  • Ashley Nicole Black (GC08) and Nicole Silverberg (C13) were nominated for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series for their work on Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, which was also nominated for Outstanding Variety Talk Series. Black is now a writer on NBC’s Bless this Mess and is a writer and cast member on the forthcoming HBO comedy series A Black Lady Sketch Show, created by Robin Thede (Medill01). Silverberg additionally hosts a popular podcast called Nicole’s Grey’s Anatomy.
  • Billy Eichner’s (C00) TruTV series Billy on the Street was nominated for Outstanding Short Form Variety Series. This is Eichner’s fourth nomination. Beyond the show, Eichner enjoys a thriving career in TV and film, which includes his recent role as Timon in Disney’s new live-action version of The Lion King.
  • Fox’s RENT, produced by Kenneth Ferrone (C04) and stage-directed by Michael Greif (C81) was nominated for five awards, including Outstanding Variety Special (Live) and Outstanding Production Design for a Variety Special. Greif won acclaim (and a Tony nomination) for directing RENT on Broadway.
  • Jill Leiderman (C93) is the executive producer of Jimmy Kimmel Live!, a nominee for Outstanding Variety Talk Series.
  • David Markus (C95) is a co-executive producer and Anthony Storm (C92) is executive producer of NBC’s American Ninja Warrior, which was nominated for the fourth straight year in the Outstanding Competition Program category.
  • Bruce McCoy (C92) is coexecutive producer of RuPaul’s Drag Race, which was nominated for several Emmy awards, including Outstanding Competition Program and Outstanding Directing for a Reality Program.
  • Seth Meyers (C96, H16) was nominated for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series both for his show Late Night with Seth Meyers but also for his work on Documentary Now!, which was also nominated for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series. Meyers in an executive producer for that series. Also nominated for writing on Late Night is Jenny Hagel (GC09) and Ally Hord (C05), both frequent on-camera contributors to the show.
  • In a departure from Meyers’ previous Emmy nominations, he and Eli Bolin (C00) were nominated for their work on Documentary Now! in the category of Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics.
  • KJ Steinberg (C95) is a co-executive producer of NBC’s This Is Us, which was nominated for the third consecutive year for Outstanding Drama Series.

And closer to Evanston, Thomas Bradshaw, associate professor in the Department of Radio/Television/Film, was a consulting producer on When They See Us, Ava DuVernay’s Netflix series about the Central Park Five. The show was nominated for 16 Emmys, including Outstanding Limited Series and Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series.

In addition to these nominees, we have many alumni starring in and associated with nominated programming, including Kristen Schaal (C00) in Bob’s Burgers, Greta Lee (C05) in Russian Doll, and Megan Mullally (C81) in Will & Grace.

Congratulations to all of our alumni starring in and affiliated with Emmy-nominated programming. The 71st Annual Emmy Awards will be broadcast on Sunday, September 22.

Did we miss someone? Please email us at so we may best celebrate the work of our alumni community.