Fates Roundup, Nov. 11, 2014
Below is a compilation of the latest moves in the industry.
Man Made Music has named Kevin Perlmutter senior VP, chief strategist. Previously the senior director of brand strategy at Interbrand, Perlmutter will be responsible for improving capabilities and strategic services. He will work closely with MMM founder Joel Beckerman to carry out the company’s vision.
Ken Ritchie has been tapped as VP and general manager of KIVI-KNIN Boise. The interim GM at the Journalist Broadcast Group since the spring, Ritchie began at KIVI as an accounts manager in 1975. He rejoined KIVI as GSM in 2002 and became the director of sales in 2009.
The slate of speakers for NATPE||Miami’s “Storytellers and the Shaping of Pop Culture” conference was announced Nov. 11. They include showrunners Vince Gilligan, Dan Harmon and Mitch Hurwitz; late night hosts Jay Leno and Craig Ferguson; business magnate Russell Simmons; and the producer of America’s Funniest Home Videos.
Louis Hillelson has returned to NewBay Media after leaving the company in October. Effective immediately, he is the VP and group publisher of its TV brands, including Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News, Next TV and Ratings Intelligence. He began working with the former two publications in 2005.
The Weather Company has named Chris Kuist as VP of insights and innovation. Kuist, who is based in New York, will be tasked with designing a cross-platform insights program to help the company’s ad sales team. He will report to Indira Venkat, senior VP, strategic research.
Discovery Networks International announced Nov. 11 that it has realigned its European operations into three business clusters. Dee Forbes, Marinella Soldi and Kasia Kieli are president and managing director of Discovery Networks Northern Europe, Southern Europe, and Central & Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, respectively.
NBC newsman Tom Brokaw and longtime Congressman John Dingell (D-Mich.) will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the White House on Nov. 24. Other recipients include composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim, actresses Meryl Streep and Marlo Thomas, musician Stevie Wonder and author Isabel Allende.
Meredith's KCTV-KSMO Kansas City has hired Edward Kosowski as new director. Kosowski, who resigned from KDVR-KWGN Denver after three years when his contract ended in September, begins his new assignment on Dec. 8. Kosowski was formerly news director at WHDH Boston and KGO San Francisco.
WE tv’s Lauren Gellert has been upped to executive VP of development and original programming. Previously the senior VP of original production and development, Gellert joined WE tv in 2012 and helped spearhead a number of new and returning unscripted original programs, growing viewership and audience engagement.
The E.W. Scripps Company has given chairman, president and CEO Rich Boehne a contract extension to Aug. 7, 2016. The board of directors approved the extension at its quarterly meeting Nov. 4. Boehne, 58, asked the company to donate $1 million to the company’s philanthropic arm to start a donor-advised fund in his name.
Mauro Páez-Pumar has been tapped as VP of affiliate sales, Scripps Networks Latin America. The 20-year media veteran, based in Miami, will be tasked with augmenting distribution of brands in the region and supervising the execution affiliate sales and marketing strategies for improving subscriber growth.
Travel Channel has given the job of senior VP, marketing, creative, communications and brand strategy to Robert Madden. Travel Channel president Shannon O’Neill made the announcement Nov. 10. Madden will be supervise brand strategy and development as well as network position and communications beginning Dec. 1.
WXIA-WATL Atlanta has welcomed Jennifer Rigby as news director. She was previously VP of live programming at Weather Channel, and senior director of coverage and talent and multimedia content director before that. Rigby also formerly served as news director at Cox stations in Atlanta, Pittsburgh and Dayton.
ESPN elevated Seth Ader to VP, marketing, effective Oct. 29. The 13-year ESPN veteran now supervises marketing for all league sports properties on the network. Ader, formerly senior director, joined ESPN in 2001 as marketing manager and was soon director of marketing in charge of the NFL and NBA.
Gordon Peterson, WJLA’s senior correspondent and 6 p.m. news anchor, is retiring. The station made the announcement in a Nov. 7 release. Peterson, a TV reporter and anchor in D.C. for more than four decades, had spent the last 10 years at the station, which was purchased by Sinclair earlier this year.
PBS announced Nov. 7 that Marie Nelson will be VP, news and public affairs. The award-winning broadcast journalist and TV executive begins Nov. 10. Nelson will work with the executive producers of PBS news and public affairs series to find ways to engage audiences across different platforms.
NBCUniversal Cable has made several executive moves. Richard Rothstein was upped to executive VP, current programming, Universal Cable productions, while Randi Richmond has been elevated to senior VP, production. Steven O’Neill has been promoted to executive VP of casting, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, and Carter Batsell to VP, business affairs.
KFMB-TV/CBS News 8's Larry Himmel died Nov. 5 of cancer. He was 68. Himmel, CBS News 8’s feature reporter for decades in San Diego, received nearly a dozen Emmy awards for his “Neighborhood Reports.” The Chicago native reported outside his home in Rancho Bernardo during the 2007 Witch Creek Fire.
The Committee to Protect Journalists is awarding the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award for lifetime achievement in the cause of press freedom to Univision News anchor Jorge Ramos. Ramos, one of several journalists being recognized at CPJ’s annual International Press Freedom Awards dinner Nov. 25.
Discovery Communications has named Phil Craig as executive VP and chief creative officer for Discovery Networks International. Craig, who had been head of factual at ABC TV in Australia since 2012, will be responsible for driving the network’s series with his international production and development team.
NBC Sports Group said that motorsports reporters Dave Burns and Mike Massaro will cover the Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series. They will also contribute to NASCAR America on NBCSN in addition to other assignments. Sam Flood, executive producer, NBC Sports and NBCSN, made the announcement Nov. 6.
Production company Bunim/Murray has appointed John P. Roberts as chief digital officer. Previously Endemol’s senior VP of digital media and commercial ventures, Roberts will emphasize increasing multiplatform, digital and web programming in leading the BMP digital division.
The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) and its Board of Trustees announced on Nov. 5 the appointment of Bob Mauro as president of the organization. Mauro is formerly CBS’ VP of network operations and executive VP and chief operation officer for Leo Burnett Worldwide.
Javier Garcia is heading to Comcast, where he will serve as VP and general manager, multicultural services. Previously the general manager Yahoo’s U.S. Hispanic business, Garcia will lead multicultural services strategy across all Xfinity products. He will report to Marcien Jenckes, executive VP of consumer services.
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By Jens Koerner