As Multichannel Newswirereported exclusively, EchoStar Communications said Thursday that it hired former MTV Networks marketer Jessica Heacock Insalaco as chief marketing officer, a move that prompted her to leave a volunteer leadership role she held with a cable-industry organization.
Insalaco, who had in the past been referred to as Heacock, starts Friday, EchoStar said in a news release. She reports to EchoStar president and vice chairman Carl Vogel and will be responsible for leading branding, messaging and advertising efforts for Dish Network's parent company. Dish is the No. 2 U.S. satellite-TV provider, with about 13.4 million subscribers.
Vogel -- a one-time CEO of cable operator Charter Communications -- said in the release that EchoStar executives were “delighted to have Jessica join the EchoStar team and are confident that her intimate understanding of the industry and demonstrated results building media brands will be a significant asset as we expand and strengthen our connections with consumers and our strategic partners.”
Insalaco was an affiliate marketer at VH1 and then at MTVN overall, in New York, leaving her position as executive vice president earlier this year. She was also a marketer at cable MSO Cox Communications and -- EchoStar pointed out in the release -- worked with EchoStar and News Corp. "during their business integration negotiations." In the late 1990s, News and EchoStar had a deal to merge satellite-TV operations, but then News Corp. backed out of the deal; EchoStar sued and News Corp. settled. She also worked for US West in Denver, and EchoStar is based in the Denver area.
Insalaco stepped down as chair of the Women in Cable Telecommunications board of directors, as that organization only has cable-industry executives in leadership positions, WICT said in a release.
“The departure of Jessica Heacock is a tremendous loss for WICT and the cable industry as a whole,” WICT CEO Benita Fitzgerald Mosley said in the release. Vice chair Jennifer Dangar, Discovery Communications' senior VP of domestic distribution, takes the board's chair.
As has been noted previously, the top marketing position at EchoStar has been hard to keep filled, as Dish Network's marketing efforts are closely scrutinized by chairman and CEO Charlie Ergen, company watchers say.
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