A+E Networks president and CEO Nancy Dubuc is leaving the company effective April 16, A+E confirmed Monday (March 12).
Former A+E Networks CEO Abbe Raven, who retired from the company in 2015, will replace Dubuc until a new replacement is named, said company officials.
Dubuc, who spent nearly 20 years at A+E Networks – the last five as president and CEO --oversaw a portfolio of networks that included A&E Network, Lifetime, History, Lifetime Movies and Viceland, along with A+E Studios, A+E Networks International, A&E Films.
“In her roughly 20 years at A+E Networks, Nancy played a major role in building the success of A&E, HISTORY and Lifetime, and we thank her for her leadership,” said Steven R. Swartz, president and CEO of Hearst, and Ben Sherwood, co-chair, Disney Media Networks and president, Disney|ABC Television, in a joint statement.“We are also very grateful to Abbe, a former CEO of the company and one of A+E’s first employees, for agreeing to return on a temporary basis as acting chair.”
Dubuc, who was reported to be in the running for the Amazon Studios top job prior to Amazon naming NBC Entertainment president Jennifer Salke to the post, said in a statement that she is leaving to look for her “next dare and challenge,” and added she’s proud of what she and A&E have accomplished together.
“Together, we have had the privilege to build some of the most iconic brands in media,” she said. “Every step of my career, I have had the opportunity to learn and grow from some of the most inspiring and innovative minds at A+E and in both the creative and business community.”
Raven, who worked with A+E Networks for 33 years, added in a statement: “Nancy and I have worked together for almost 20 years and I have seen the tremendous accomplishments and innovation she has brought to A+E – from its creative content to attracting award-winning talent and the digital and studio businesses she has nurtured. A+E is a special place with extraordinary and talented people. I look forward to helping the board and leading the talented A+E teams during this transition.”
Dubuc's full statement follows:
“For nearly 20 years, I have called A+E Networks home and the team has been an extended part of my family. Together, we have had the privilege to build some of the most iconic brands in media. Every step of my career, I have had the opportunity to learn and grow from some of the most inspiring and innovative minds at A+E and in both the creative and business community. I could not be prouder of what we achieved together.
“Anyone who knows me well knows I am an entrepreneur, creator, rebel and disruptor at heart. I have a famous neon sign in my office that blares ‘Who dares wins.’ After 20 years at A+E, the hardest thing will be to leave the people and company I love. But, as a creative executive and leader, and to stay true to my personal mantra, I need my next dare and my next challenge.
“I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to our owners at Hearst and The Walt Disney Company for their unwavering support and belief in me over my long career here. I’d especially like to thank Steve and Ben for supporting my decision to write my next chapter.
“I have supreme confidence in the brave storytellers and management team A+E and I will always be rooting for and watching proudly from the sidelines – even as I head off to my next adventure.”
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R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.