Dan Rotante: A Rememberance
Dan Rotante, most recently a technical manager for Fox Sports, MLB Network, and Versus, died last Saturday at his home in Westminster, CO, following a three-year battle with cancer. He is survived by his wife, Gale, and children Dominick, Sydney, Lesa, Donna, and Jackie.
Rotante, however, was more than just a technical manager, although he certainly made his mark there as he worked in the role on multiple Super Bowls, baseball post seasons, Olympics, and All Star Games, countless network baseball games, and so much more. He was a teacher and a mentor to many starting their careers in television and always seemed to have time to communicate with the newer people, and make them feel like part of the crew.
Many who worked with Rotante recently didn’t know him for what he did in his earlier career as a tape operator where he earned a reputation as being one of the best. A seasoned tape op who worked with CBS, HBO, NBC, and countless others, Rotante started at Fox at the beginning of the network and jumped quickly into to tech producing where he worked with the company through all of its inaugural sports, NFL, MLB, and the NHL, leaving the tape room behind. He continued to work with Fox weekly on baseball and football for over 17 years, and added MLB Network into his client list, doing weekly games for them as well.
Rotante was a person that one never forgets: a man with a mustache and a familiar gait walking to and from the television compound, his rolling bag in tow – a human hallmark of baseball and football games all over the country. His heavy Brooklyn accent, perhaps out of place for his home in Westminster, was unmistakable as was a knowing double raise of his eyebrows or a quick smile-less wink after an offhanded comment in the third bench of a production truck.
He seemed at home in the television compound – he knew everyone, and everyone knew him as he shepherded countless television productions through the sets, shoots and strikes over the years, leaving behind a colorful litany of stories, anecdotes and jokes for which he was universally renowned.
Instantly likable, ultimately accountable, and insightfully knowledgeable, he is an irreplaceable part of our industry. He will be missed by so many.