AT&T Names Warner Bros. Discovery Board Members, Including Debra Lee

Debra Lee
Debra Lee

AT&T named seven directors who will serve on the board of Warner Bros. Discovery, including former BET chair and CEO Debra Lee.

Directors named by Discovery include the company’s future CEO David Zaslav and his mentor, cable pioneer John Malone.

Under the terms of AT&T’s deal with Discovery, AT&T gets seven of the 13 seats on the Warner Bros. Discovery board after AT&T spins off WarnerMedia and Discovery acquires it. The transaction is expected to be completed early in the second quarter.

AT&T said that Samuel Di Piazza Jr. will be chairman of the Warner Bros. Discovery board of directors. Di Piazza retired a CEO of PricewaterhouseCoopers International in 2009 and was vice chairman of Citigroup from 2011 to 2014

Other directors named to the new company’s board by AT&T are Li Haslett Chen, founder and CEO of Narrativ, a technology platform; Richard Fisher, former president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas; Fazal Merchant, former CFO of DreamWorks Animation; Paula Price, former executive VP and CFO of Macy’s, and Geoffrey Yang, former CEO of Performance Health Sciences.

Discovery said its directors will be Zaslav; Malone, chairman of Liberty Media, Liberty Broadband and Liberty Global; Steven Miron, CEO of Advance/Newhouse Partnership; Steven O. Newhouse, co-president of Advance; Robert Bennett, managing director of Hilltop Investments, and Paul Gould, managing director at Allen & Co. 

“I look forward to working alongside and benefiting from the collective experience of this group of distinguished leaders to create and grow the world’s most dynamic media entertainment company and a top-tier competitor in streaming. This board brings diverse personal perspectives, strong track records and invaluable industry knowledge. Its stewardship will help establish the company as the premier creator of impactful storytelling across genres and platforms,” said Zaslav, who will be CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery. ■

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.