Fates Roundup, Feb 17, 2015

Below is a compilation of the latest moves in the industry.

Robert DeLay, the longtime Direct Marketing Association president, died Feb. 14. He was 96. DeLay, who worked in advertising and PR for more than a dozen years before joining DMA in 1959, cofounded the Direct Marketing Educational Foundation (now known as Marketing EDGE) in 1966 and served on that board for 36 years.

Van Toffler is leaving Viacom, where he has worked for 28 years. Toffler, who has been president of the music and Logo group, encompassing MTV, VH1, CMT and Logo, will depart officially later this year. His departure was announced to staff in an internal email Feb. 17.

Melissa Rivers, the daughter of the late Joan Rivers and an executive producer on Fashion Police, will be doing a series of special interviews for nightly Hollywood news series Entertainment Tonight. Her first interview will be with Neil Patrick Harris, airing on Feb. 19, three days before he hosts the Oscars.

TLC has named Scott Lewers senior VP of multi-platform strategy, effective immediately. Lewers, previously Discovery Channel’s senior VP of programming, will be tasked with working with different groups across the company to find opportunities to increase its reach on on-air, online and social platforms.

For its annual D.C. summit on March 4, the American Cable Association has scheduled a panel on network neutrality. ACA has been pushing the FCC, which is planning to vote on new network neutrality rules Feb. 26, to exempt its members from Title II rules.

TV One has upped Robyn Greene Arrington to VP of original programming and production, the company announced Feb. 17. Green Arrington, who has helped develop numerous original series, specials and films in the last 10 years, will be based in New York and continue reporting to D’Angela Proctor, senior VP original programming and production.

Automated TV advertising supply-side platform Videa announced Feb. 17 two new hires. Mary Barnas, the former head of Cox Cross Media, will serve as VP of platform adoption. Archie Gianunzio, the former VP and director of sales for Cox Reps, will serve as VP of sales at Videa.

Univision Communications Inc. senior executive VP and chief financial officer Andy Hobson has resigned from his roles. Executive VP finance and chief accounting officer Peter Lori will take over as interim CFO. Hobson will aid in the transition.

L-S-B Broadcast Technologies has tapped Martin Blum as its new sales manager. Blum, who has nearly 30 years of experience in the broadcast business, including a stint as sales and key-account manager at Snell, will oversee sales for the D-A-CH region and Eastern Europe.

True Detective and Louie each earned two trophies at the 2015 Writers Guild Awards on Feb. 14. The HBO crime noir won for best drama series and best new series, while Louis C.K.’s FX series snagged awards in both comedy categories. HBO tallied four awards on the night

Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In announcer Gary Owens died Feb. 12 at his home. He was 80. Owens famously was the show’s announcer on every episode on NBC from 1968-1974. Owens received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1980 and was inducted into the National Television Hall of Fame in 2001.

The National Association of Broadcasters has appointed Tanya Van Pool VP of research. Van Pool, who joined NAB in 2011 and had been serving as director of research, takes over for Sharon Warden, who retired at the end of last year.

Popular New York Times media columnist David Carr died Feb. 12 in Manhattan. He was 58. Carr, who joined the newspaper in 2002, covered the decline of print and rise of digital media, in addition to television and film. His reporting was featured in the 2011 documentary Page One.

Video delivery infrastructure provider ATEME has hired Yossi Aloni as chief marketing office. Aloni, who will be based in the Silicon Valley, brings more than two decades of broadcast experience, with past positions at Magnum, Optibase and MGM International.

Starcom MediaVest Group’s LiquidThread announced four company appointments on Feb. 12. Brent Poer has been promoted to global creative director, Juan Davila to senior VP, managing director, global business development, and Jill Griffin to senior VP, managing director, operations, USA. In addition, John Doyle was named senior VP, managing director, USA.

NBCUniversal’s Jerry Leo has been upped to executive VP, program strategy, lifestyle networks and production, Bravo Media. Leo, who will now oversee E! Entertainment and Esquire Network, will continue to supervise strategic planning and programming for Bravo and Oxygen.

The Saturday Night Live documentaryLive From New York! will open the 14th Tribeca Film Festival. The documentary chronicles the show’s 40-year run, with early archival footage and exclusive interviews and commentaries from performers, journalists and crew.

After adding BBC America, AMC Networks is restructuring its ad sales division. Executive VP Scott Collins, who is now responsible for BBC America, SundanceTV and IFC as well as AMC and WE tv, will report to Arlene Manos, who remains as president of ad sales. Todd Schwartzman will serve as BBC America’s senior VP of ad sales.

Dan Modisett, who retired from his job as GM of Raycom’s WLBT at the end of last year, is back in the game as WTVA Tupelo’s new interim general manager. Heartland Media acquired the station from the Spain family. Modisett takes over for Phil Sullivan, who is retiring on March 6.

Three Six Zero Group cofounders Mark Gillespie and Dean Wilson are forming Three Six Zero Entertainment with talent agent David Unger. Unger and Gillespie will lead offices in Los Angeles, New York and London as coCEOs. The company will be partnering with Jay Z’s Roc Nation entertainment company.

Fox Television Stations CEO Jack Abernethy announced that Joseph Dorrego will serve as the group’s senior VP and chief financial officer. Dorrego, who had been 21st Century Fox’s VP of investor relations, will be responsible for all of the station group’s financial functions.

Ralph Oakley, who had been serving as vice chairman of government for the NBC affiliates board, is taking over as chairman. Oakley, who is the president and CEO of Quincy Newspapers, Inc., succeeds James Conschafter, who departed from his position as Media General VP of broadcast markets at the end of last year.

Longtime 60 Minutes newsman Bob Simon died in a car crash in New York City on Feb. 11. He was 73. Simon, who had been with the newsmagazine since 1996, won 27 Emmys throughout his career, which started in the 1960s for CBS News. He won the Peabody Award in 1999 for international reporting.

CBS Television Distribution’s Hilary Estey McLoughlin is leaving her role as president of creative affairs. CBS Entertainment senior VP of daytime is assuming development duties, while executive VP of current programming Joe Ferullo will supervise current programs. Executive VP of development Elaine Bauer Brooks joins the department.

KABC Los Angeles VP and news director Cheryl Fair has been elevated to president and general manager of the ABC-owned station. Fair, who spent 20 years at WPVI Philadelphia moving up from producer to managing editor to executive producer, is taking over for Arnie Kleiner, who retired last month.

Samuel Gähwiler has been tapped as managing director of joiz Global, while Itai Aaronsohn will serve as head of product. Alexander Mazzara, cofounder and CEO of joiz Group, made the announcements Feb. 11. Gähwiler will be responsible in part for the creative and commercial strategy of the company, specializing in cloud-based proprietary technology.

KFMB San Diego sports director Kyle Kraska was wounded in a Feb. 10 shooting outside his home. Kraska was shot 10 times and sustained wounds to his leg and stomach; Michael Montana, the alleged shooter, surrendered to SWAT officers.