People on the Move

A VP leaves A&E; BTDA welcomes new chair; revolving doors at the Beeb and AOL Time Warner
January 16, 2003

A&E announced that CarolAnne Dolan, VP of documentary programming (and executive producer of the ‘Biography’ strand), is leaving the network. Her replacement has not yet been named.

Ian Jones, general manager of Granada International, has been elected as the chair of the British Television Distributors’ Association for 2003.

The BBC has lured Martin Scott back from Celador Productions to take the position of editor, light entertainment, replacing Jonathan Glazier (see RealScreen Plus, November 7, 2002). Scott was a development executive at Celador.

Sophie Turner Laing, formerly BBC controller of acquisitions, has been appointed to head the Sky networks’ film and acquisitions business.

AOL Time Warner chairman Steve Case tendered his resignation after months of grumbling from shareholders and media over the poor performance of the world’s largest media company. His departure will be effective as of spring 2003, but he will stay on as a board member.

Meanwhile, Walter Isaacson, chairman of AOL Time Warner’s cable network, CNN, announced that he will step down in the spring, less than two years into the job (Isaacson will be the new CEO at the Aspen Institute, a nonprofit research center). Jim Walton, currently Isaacson’s deputy, will move into the top job.

Canada’s Discovery Channel has elevated its senior VP of programming Paul Lewis to the position of president and general manager, replacing Ken Murphy.

E! Networks has appointed Salaam Coleman Smith to the new position of VP, programming. Coleman Smith will handle program planning as well acquisitions for both E! Entertainment Television and Style Network.

John McMahon has been promoted from executive VP to senior executive vice president, managing director for Sony Pictures Television International’s European operations.

Arlington, U.S.-based Henninger Media Services has named Eric Hansen as chief operating officer, handling day-to-day operations as well as marketing, sales and account management.

Warner Bros. announced the appointment of James Cardwell to the position of president, Warner Home Video. Cardwell was most recently the executive VP, North America/Australia of the Warner Bros. distrib.

American Public Television announced some changes to its premium service division. Christi Collier has resigned as VP, but will now serve as program development and production executive. Eric Luskin, currently head of syndication, has been promoted to the position of VP, premium service and syndication. Andrea Hanson is the new senior program executive for premium service and acquisitions.

Channel 4 picked Mary FitzPatrick to the position of editorial manager, cultural diversity.

Elizabeth Sheldon is now the director of acquisitions and co-productions for Wynnewood, U.S.-based Schlessinger Media, a division of Library Video Company that acquires and co-produces educational series.

New York-based cable network TNN has appointed film and television producer Albie Hecht as its new president. The network also announced the departure of its general manager of the past two years, Diane Robina.

The National Film Board of Canada said that effective March 3, 2003, Sayedali Rawji will take on the role of director of technical services. Rawji is currently assistant director-general of the English Program.

Canadian indie broadcaster VisionTV has two new board members: doc producer Susan Millican and Donald A. Obonsawin, a former deputy minister for several ministries of the province of Ontario.

The Wyoming, U.S.-based Jackson Hole Wildlife Festival has appointed Laura Johnson as associate Director of the festival. Johnson was previously the administrative director and coordinator of this year’s technical symposium.

The Independent Television Service has added two members to its board of directors: consultant Woodward Wickham and indie producer Lise Yasui. ITVS has also elected a new executive committee. For more information on the organization and its new members, visit

About The Author
Managing editor with realscreen publication, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Darah is an award-winning journalist who has spent over two decades covering a wide range of issues from real estate and urban development to immigration, politics and human rights, primarily with The Vancouver Sun. Prior to joining realscreen, she was editor of Stream Daily, realscreen's sister publication covering the dynamic global digital video industry. She also served a stint as a war reporter in Afghanistan for television and print, and was a national business blogger with Yahoo Canada.