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Exclusive: Yaccarino to Leave Turner Ad Sales

Linda Yaccarino, the top advertising sales executive for Turner Entertainment plans to leave the company when her contract expires.

Yaccarino, who has been with Turner for 18 years, reports to David Levy, who is head of sales, distribution and sports for all of Turner Broadcasting. Yaccarino, an executive VP at Turner, was also responsible for program acquisition for Turner's cable networks.

According to an internal memo from Levy, Yaccarino is leaving to pursue new professional opportunities.

In an internal announcement, Levy said that for the time being, Turner Entertainment Networks ad sales tem will report to him, and Steve Koonin, president of Turner Entertainment Networks, will oversee acquisitions.

"This decision creates an opportunity for us to review and refine the operating models for our Entertainment Ad Sales and Acquisitions functions," Levy said in the memo. "We have complete confidence in our deep bench of sales experts and business leaders, whose ability, commitment and loyalty will guide us through this period of change and continue to represent Turner's industry-leading brands in and to the marketplace."

Levy added that "Linda's position in the company, her profile in the industry and the personal regard we have for her add significance to her departure. She leaves with our thanks and sincere best wishes for continued success in her next chapter."

Yaccarino has been a key player at Turner.  She's been responsible for innovation on the sales side including Turners TVinContext initiative, which aims to link advertiser messages with programming content.