Giant Jeff Zucker Says Trump Jabs Have Enhanced CNN Brand

Jeff Zucker, CNN president, told a room of broadcast veterans that he relishes the challenges thrown out by President Trump and his administration, and that CNN will continue its resolute coverage of the White House.

“The people in the current administration in Washington have attacked us. They’ve called us names just for doing our jobs,” he said while being named a Giant of Broadcasting by the Library of American Broadcasting Foundation. “But that’s only emboldened us, and made us stronger.”

The punches at CNN from Trump and his followers have not hurt the CNN brand, Zucker said, and in fact have “only enhanced it.”

Zucker said it’s the media’s job “to hold those in power accountable.”

“The primary responsibility of the media is accountability of government,” he added. “It is our job to hold the Administration’s feet to the fire. They should respect that, even if they don’t like it.”

He added, “We’re going to continue to do it.”

Zucker, former NBCUniversal CEO, mentioned his 30 years in the news business, including a stint runningToday when he was 26. “There’s never been a more important time,” he said. “The truth does matter.”

The International Radio & Television Society Foundation produced the event.

Others named to the Giants of Broadcasting honor list Wednesday in New York were Gary Chapman, former chairman/president/CEO of LIN TV; Michael Fiorile, chairman and CEO of Dispatch Broadcast Group; Barbara Eden of I Dream of Jeannie; Bill Koenigsberg, president/CEO/founder of Horizon Media; Jeff Fager, executive producer of 60 Minutes; Andrea Mitchell, chief foreign affairs correspondent at NBC News; and Joe and David Field, chairman and president/CEO, respectively, of Entercom Communications.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.