Ford Joins Ion as Head of Programming

Discovery Network veteran John Ford has joined Ion Media Networks as president of programming, Ion announced Monday.
Ford will explore creating original programming at Ion. He will also oversee acquisitions, scheduling, creative strategy and positioning.

"John's seasoned experience brings a whole new creative perspective to ION, including his background in acquisitions, unscripted reality content, major events and co-productions," said Brandon Burgess, CEO of Ion Media Networks in a statement. "All these content sources are on the table as ION builds upon its growth momentum and looks to extend its television franchise in the years to come."

Ford will be working with Marc Zand, who assumes a new and expanded role as Executive VP Content Acquisitions and Digital Networks. Zand will oversee the network's TV series and movie acquisitions and negotiation activities reporting to Ford, while continuing to lead ION's digital channels Qubo and ION Life. Zand had been executive VP, Digital Networks & Business Affairs

"ION is a great environment to serve loyal entertainment TV audiences in the network's growing 25-54 fan base," Ford said. "I look forward to drawing on ION's impressive distribution across broadcast, cable, satellite and telco households to serve and grow this core demographic."

Ford held senior executive positions at Discovery Networks channels including Discovery Channel, TLC, Discovery Times and Military Channel. He also served as executive VP, programming at National Geographic Channel.

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.