Vanguard Awards: Marketing: Coleman Breland

Coleman Breland serves as president of Turner Network Sales (TNS), the domestic distribution, sales and marketing arm of Turner Broadcasting System, overseeing affiliate sales, marketing promotion, interactive television and new technology business development for the company’s news and entertainment networks.

He also supervises sales and negotiations for Turner’s 10 domestic basic-cable networks, including CNN, TNT, TBS and Cartoon Network, as well as the partnerships developed by Turner Private Networks and the Business Development group. Breland manages the affiliate marketing and affiliate ad-sales groups, and works with affiliate partners to further align their business partnerships.

The National Cable & Telecommunications Association this year is honoring Breland with its Vanguard Award for Marketing, which spotlights an individual who has been instrumental in the development of marketing approaches that significantly enhance cable’s public image and increase customers.

Breland is based in Atlanta and reports to David Levy, Turner’s president. He was most recently chief operating officer for TNS, a role he assumed in 2009 after serving as executive vice president of sales and marketing for Turner’s distribution unit since 2003. He joined the division as senior vice president of marketing and sales. Prior to joining Turner, Breland served as director of marketing and communications for Arthur Andersen/Andersen Consulting in Atlanta for more than six years.

Breland has steadily climbed the corporate ladder at Turner but it wasn’t easy getting in the door. Once he decided he wanted to work for the programmer, he applied for almost every open position and was rejected 11 times before he was hired in 1994 as vice president of marketing for Turner Home Satellite, according to Broadcasting & Cable.

Breland has a lot on his plate at Turner, but he’s also active outside the office. He currently serves on the board of the Center for Civil and Human Rights, the Board of Advisers for the Center for Ethics at Emory University, and the board of the Covenant House of Georgia. He is also a member of the CTAM Educational Foundation Board of Directors and of the Rotary Club of Atlanta. He has previously served on the board of directors for Zoo Atlanta, as the chair for the organization’s marketing committee from 2003 to 2008. He also served on the board of CTAM from 2002 to 2005, and served on the board of Prevent Child Abuse Georgia (formerly Georgia Council on Child Abuse) from 1996 to 2002.

Breland also served on the board of the Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association for five years. He holds a master’s degree in journalism, radio, television and film from the University of Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in English from Pfeiffer College in North Carolina. In addition, he completed a graduate study program at Edinburgh University in Scotland.

Fun Fact:

Breland’s first job was writing for the Dean Rusk Center for International Law. Then, he worked for Southern Satellite Systems, selling time on the vertical blanking interval on TBS, which was used to transmit data at the then-breakneck rate of 2,400 baud.