The Rising 25 Class of 2019, presented by AB InBev, represents some of the brightest young professionals in the sports industry. Over the next several weeks, we’re proud to introduce you to this year’s winners and highlight some of their achievements to date.
Today, meet Madeline Down, Productions Manager at the Seattle Seahawks.
A 2016 graduate of the University of Washington, Down worked as a video production assistant in the athletic department at her alma mater before moving on to become a video producer with Seattle Reign FC as well as a freelance video producer before joining the Seahawks full-time. Down’s passion as a storyteller has allowed her to succeed in all of these roles.
“When I got out of college, I just wanted to be doing something that I enjoyed, where the time melted away. It really just starts with the love for video production,” she says. “I fell in love with that short-form idea, being able to tell a story beyond the game being played in front of us about the players or the community or the fans.”
On top of quality first-hand experience in some of the “nitty gritty” aspects of video editing, her first job at UW supplied Down with what would become the most important professional lesson of her career.
“My first boss at UW always said ‘make sure your next video is better than your last,” she says. “I’ve taken that approach with every piece of work. It’s not just video — it doesn’t matter what I’m doing or who I’m doing it for. Holding myself to that bar has been really formative for me. I try to make sure that I’m always improving.”
In her current role with the Seahawks, Down directs game day productions for each of the Seahawks home games and leads the ideation and production of all video assets shown on the video board at CenturyLink Field. This includes projects like the team’s intro video, which garnered 242,000 views and 1.1 million impressions on social media. This also includes directing live video throughout the stadium such as the Seahawks’ famous raising of the 12 flag, which is done prior to every home game. Down also creates elements for Seattle’s preseason television broadcasts, which are the second-highest rated preseason games in the NFL.
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As she continues to tell new stories for fans, Down knows that staying in the moment will continue to serve her well. Her advice to the next generation of sports professionals is to adopt a similar mentality.
“Make an impact in the puddle you’re in,” she says. “A lot of times people are dreaming of getting to a major league or the highest professional level. But there’s a ton of impact you can make at your minor league team right now that will lead to impact later on. Say yes to everything, do good work, have integrity, and people will notice and that will be what drives your success.”
Meet the full class of 2019 here.