A Conversation with Sage Steele

January 22, 2024

Sage Steele is a force of nature in media, and her compelling story speaks for itself. From her 16-year tenure at ESPN as a “Sportscenter” anchor, to appearances across shows like Jimmy Kimmel Live and ABC’s The View, Steele has captivated an increasing viewership through her wit and charm that transcends sports.

Everything changed for Steele in the Fall of 2021. In the throes of cultural upheavals that placed corporations and employees in a cancel culture minefield, ESPN suspended Steele for comments made on a podcast that in another era would have gone unnoticed. Steele decided to take a stand, filing a free speech lawsuit against ESPN/Disney, and departed the network after reaching a settlement in August of 2023. Steele has since become a vocal First Amendment advocate and a leading voice against fear, censorship, and conformity.

On January 22, FOLCS hosted a Conversation with Sage Steele, who is leaving a dynamic mark on the media world, while challenging the costs of speaking freely.


Click here to view a full list of our past Conversations.


Sage Steele
Broadcast Journalist

Sage Steele is one of the country’s most popular and respected broadcasters. Most recently, she was a fixture at ESPN from 2007-2023, hosting the network’s flagship show, SportsCenter.

Throughout the years, Steele has hosted a variety of shows and countless live events, including SportsCenter’s coverage of the Super Bowl, The Masters, The NBA Finals, the World Series, and several other national and international sporting events. During her 16 year tenure at ESPN, Steele was also the lead host of the network’s NBA coverage, hosting NBA Countdown on ESPN & ABC from 2013-2017 before returning to her SportsCenter roots.

Outside of the sports world, Sage has hosted a variety of events, including The Scripps National Spelling Bee from 2010-2012, The Miss America Pageant in 2016 & 2017 on ABC, The Tournament of Roses Parade on ABC since 2018, and Dick Clark’s 2016 New Year’s Rockin’ Eve on ABC. In March 2019, Steele co-hosted the ABC special “Volcano Live with Nik Wallenda” as the famous daredevil walked a tightrope across a live volcano in Nicaragua.

Through the years, Sage has been a featured guest host on ABC’s The View, was a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and has been profiled by numerous publications, including Rolling Stone, Variety, The Wall Street Journal, Vibe, and Huffington Post, to name just a few.

Before her ESPN success, Sage’s journalism career began in 1995 upon graduation from Indiana University. She held producing, reporting, and anchoring roles in local markets — South Bend, IN (WSBT-TV), Indianapolis, IN (WISH-TV), and Tampa, FL (WFTS-TV) — before landing similar roles at regional television networks in Tampa (Fox Sports Florida) and Washington, DC/Baltimore (Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic).

Beyond the spotlight, Steele has a philanthropic and charitable heart for many passionate causes. Sage is proud to be a member of the board of directors for The Boys & Girls Club of America. She is also in her third year as a board member for The V Foundation for Cancer Research and an advisory board member for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF). She volunteers with The Alzheimer’s Association and is active in her local church in Connecticut.

Most importantly, Steele is the proud mother of three children, ages 21, 17 & 19, and resides in Connecticut and Florida.