MILWAUKEE (WQOW) - Lisa Byington and the Milwaukee Bucks are making history.
Byington was announced as the team's new television play-by-play announcer on Wednesday. She is the first female full-time television play-by-play broadcaster for a major men's professional sports team.
“We are so excited to welcome Lisa to the Bucks family and to bring such a talented play-by-play announcer to our broadcast team,” Bucks and Fiserv Forum President Peter Feigin said in a release. “Lisa’s extensive television broadcasting background, including her play-by-play work for high-level NCAA basketball on several national networks, makes her the perfect choice to take on this major role. While we appreciate the significance of selecting Lisa, and we celebrate this historic moment, Lisa earned this position based on her extraordinary skills and experience. We look forward to Lisa becoming the voice of the Bucks.”
Byington takes over for Jim Paschke, who retired after 35 years.
“I’m absolutely thrilled for this opportunity, and the ability to work with a first-class franchise and a championship organization like the Milwaukee Bucks,” Byington said. “My sincerest appreciation and thanks go out to so many, but, in particular, Bucks President Peter Feigin and Bally Sports Wisconsin Executive Producer Tony Tortorici for making this such a smooth process from start to finish. I know that I will be stepping into the role long-held by Jim Paschke, and I appreciate his passion for the team and the memorable moments his voice will always be a part of. I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge his work and commitment to the franchise, and it’s my honor to be the one who takes the baton from him. I’m particularly excited to work with such an amazing team of Marques Johnson, Zora Stephenson, Steve Novak and everyone involved with Bucks games at Bally Sports Wisconsin.
“Finally, I understand the groundbreaking nature of this hire, and I appreciate the fact that during this process that aspect was addressed, but never made a primary focus. In fact, I applaud the Bucks for taking the first steps toward making hires like this more of the norm in the NBA. Because it’s time.”
In March, Byington became the first female play-by-play voice to work the NCAA men's basketball tournament as she called First Round games for CBS and Turner Sports. More recently, Byington worked the 2021 Olympic Games in Tokyo for NBC Sports as a men's and women's soccer play-by-play announcer and also did play-by-play for the Women's World Cup on FOX in 2019.
From 2017-19, Byington worked as a sideline reporter for the NCAA men’s basketball tournament on CBS and Turner Sports, and she also has experience doing play-by-play for NBA and WNBA games.
In 2017, Byington became the first female play-by-play voice for a college football game on the Big Ten Network and shortly after was part of an MLS game broadcast that was believed to be the first all-female broadcast of any of the five major men’s professional leagues.
A basketball and soccer player at Northwestern University, Byington, a Portage, Michigan native, began her broadcasting career with two local television stations in Michigan before moving to FOX Sports and the Big Ten Network where she has served in a number of roles over the past decade. Throughout her career, she has broadcast games for FOX Sports, FS1, Big Ten Network, CBS, Turner Sports, Pac-12 Network, ESPN and the SEC Network in both play-by-play and reporter roles.