People/Biz

Scripps boosts exec ranks, ups Burton Jablin to COO

Scripps Networks Interactive has bolstered its senior management ranks by upping Burton Jablin (pictured, left) to company COO and Kathleen Finch (right) to head of programming and content creation for its domestic brands.
August 20, 2015

Scripps Networks Interactive (SNI) has bolstered its senior management ranks by upping Burton Jablin (pictured, left) to company COO and Kathleen Finch (right) to head of programming and content creation for all six of its domestic brands.

Currently SNI president, the new role affords Jablin oversight on sales, distribution, programming, digital and strategic planning for the company, while providing coordination between SNI’s domestic and international programming. He will continue to report to Kenneth Lowe, SNI’s chairman, president and CEO.

Having boarded the company during HGTV’s 1994 launch, Jablin previously served as executive producer and managed the channel’s original programming slate. He also served under a raft of senior production and programming titles within the company prior to being named SNI president in 2013.

Finch – who is currently president of HGTV, DIY Network and Great American Country – has been appointed chief programming, content and brand officer. Reporting to Jablin, she will be tasked with overseeing programming across the company’s six domestic networks, including Food Network, Cooking Channel and Travel Channel. She is to split her time between the company’s Knoxville and New York offices.

The exec joined the company in 1999 as senior VP of primetime programming at Food Network before being promoted to lead HGTV and DIY Network. Finch has been responsible for launching such series as Property Brothers, Flip or Flop, and Fixer Upper.

Elsewhere, Shannon O’Neill has been promoted from president of Travel Channel to MD of finance and operations of SNI’s U.S. networks. He will report to CFO Lori Hickok and support Finch in enacting a cohesive approach to the network’s daily operations and capital allocations across U.S. business ventures.

The appointments follow news that Brooke Johnson is to retire from her post as SNI president of Food Network and Cooking Channel at the end of 2016.

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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