Costantini Joins Scripps As Affiliate Sales Chief

Scripps Networks has hired Time Warner Cable veteran Lynne Costantini as its new executive vice president of affiliate sales and marketing, officials said Tuesday.

She succeeds John Baird, who announced his retirement last September, effective this year. 

Costantini will assume her post at Scripps Networks, the E.W. Scripps cable unit that posted $1.2 billion in revenue last year, by April 1. She will be based at the company’s headquarters in Knoxville, Tenn. 

The company is on track to split into two separate publicly traded companies -- one housing the cable properties, HGTV, Food Network, DIY Network, Fine Living Network and Great American Country, the other the newspaper and newspaper holdings -- by June 30.

Costantini joins Scripps Networks after a decade at Time Warner Cable, the second largest U.S. cable operator, where most recently she was senior vice president and chief business affairs officer. In that role, Costantini set the strategy for Time Warner’s technology partnerships, commercial negotiations and other enterprise-wide initiatives.

She previously served as Time Warner’s senior vice president for programming, working for the late executive vice president of programming Fred Dressler. Her role include responsibilities for helping to develop and set the direction of the company’s content strategy, as well as negotiating multiplatform content deals. Costantini, though, did not succeed Dressler as the operator’s top programming executive when he retired at the end of 2006. That role went to Melinda Witmer.

Costantini, who earned her bachelor’s degree in economics from Manhattanville College before getting a law degree from New York Law School, began her career in the mid-1980s in corporate law.

“Scripps Networks is a forward-thinking company with some of the strongest consumer brands in media,” Costantini said in a statement. “It continues to be a culture that innovates, fueled by a talented group of people at every level of the organization. The potential to grow these networks and expand the reach of the brands in today’s multiplatform environment is tremendous.”