In February 2004, Dawn Pappas joined WWE as a media relations manager in Canada. Pappas had a background EMI Music Canada and BMG Music Canada before joining WWE.
Pappas admitted she didn't know much about the world of wrestling, only citing Roddy Piper and Cyndi Lauper as her points of reference, before she joined, but given her role in the company, she did work alongside Vince McMahon at various points.
Speaking on Chosen Life Podcast, Pappas reflected on her time working in WWE.
"Vince is likely exactly what you think Vince is like. That's not fair, he's not (the Vince McMahon character). He's very calculating, he's very smart, he's very direct. I didn't have a lot of direct interaction with Vince, but there was one interview that he was doing for Sportsnet or TSN, and there had been a lot of steroid controversy at the time. I was in the green room with him before the interview and I said, 'I have the list of questions.' He said, 'Put it away.' 'You sure? Bret. Steroids.' 'Put it away.' I had a lot of respect for somebody who was willing to go into a live interview, he knows his shit, he knows his positions because he truly embodies that company. I think, and this is just me talking, he failed wrestling by not taking the threat of MMA seriously, and I say this as someone who came from an industry that got hammered by Napster. I came from music and they weren't taking streaming seriously, and that did a lot of damage to the music industry. When I went to WWE and I started seeing the numbers dropping, 'oh, we're losing our viewership.' Okay, what are we doing about it? My first thought was, we should all be going to Vegas and a MMA event and see what they're doing and comparing it to what we're doing. WWE and Vince's world, nobody wants to hear that. Vince is going to do what Vince is going to do and he doesn't want to know, think, or see anything else going on outside. That was the impression I got. To hear Hunter [Triple H] has been doing a great job with the company, I love that because I love him, he's a super smart guy. I liked him and have a lot of respect for him. I'm not surprised that Vince can't take a seat. It's his life and blood," she said.
Pappas worked in WWE for over three years before she was let go.
McMahon retired from his position as WWE CEO in July 2022 amid sexual misconduct and hush money allegations but returned on January 6 as a member of the board to help with media rights negotiations and a potential sale. You can learn more about McMahon's return by clicking here.
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