The new Fox has named former White House communications director Hope Hicks as chief communications officer.
Fox, the new company created after 21st Century Fox sells assets to the Walt Disney Co., also named Danny O’Brien as executive VP and head of governmental relations. O’Brien had been with General Electric.
The appointments take effect after the Disney transaction closes and the new Fox is created.
“Hope and Danny are proven leaders and world-class public affairs professionals. Together they will define and project Fox’s voice to our relevant communities,” said Viet Dihn, Fox chief legal and policy officer.
Both executives will report to Dihn.
A number of Fox executives and commentators, including former Fox News Co-President Bill Shine have joined the Trump administration, and Hicks is now headed from the White House to Fox. This prompted a statement from media watchdog group Media Matters for America.
“Hope Hicks taking a c-suite position at Fox is another reminder that Fox is not a news network, but rather a partisan propaganda operation dedicated to serving Trump's interests -- and that operation is gearing up for 2020," the group said.
“Hope Hicks' presence at Fox will further align the Trump communications apparatus with the Fox News propaganda machine. Hiring Hicks for this role shortly after elevating the ad chief at Fox News to be in charge of advertising for all of New Fox indicates that Lachlan Murdoch is centering New Fox around the Fox News model. In doing so, Lachlan is making it clear that he intends to not merely tolerate Fox News’ extremism and political mission, but to actively facilitate it.
"Bottom line: Fox News is actually about to get even worse and more destructive, unless the all-in-for-Trump trajectory that Lachlan has placed the company on becomes a business problem. Media Matters is fully prepared to escalate our efforts to educate advertisers and other business stakeholders about the risks of aligning with Fox," Media Matters said
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.
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