Skip to main content

DeDe Lea Tops Viacom in D.C.

DeDe Lea, VP of government affairs for Belo, has been named senior VP, government relations, for Viacom.

She starts Sept. 19 and will oversee government relations for the new Viacom when it divides into two companies—Viacom and CBS—expected by the first quarter of next year.

Divisions under her Washington purview are MTV Networks, BET, Paramount Pictures, Paramount
Home Entertainment, and Famous Music. 

Viacom's top lobbyist, Carol Melton, exited in June to re-join her former company, Time Warner, as executive VP for global public policy.

It will be a corporate homecoming for Lea as well. The Howard University and Georgetown University Law School graduate joined Belo in September 2004 after a seven-year stint with Viacom as VP of government affairs. Prior to that she was senior VP of government affairs at the National Association of Broadcasters.

Representing the broadcasting industry in both positions, she played a big role in pushing the 1992 Cable Act and the Telecommunications Act rewrite in 1996.

She also pursued stronger piracy protections for television programmers and helped block various lawmakers' efforts to auction digital spectrum and impose content regulation on broadcasters.—Alan Breznick contributed to this report.