People/Biz

Varo Jarrell boards Discovery Studios, Lee upped at TLC

Discovery Communications has tapped Sandy Varo Jarrell (pictured, left) as senior VP of creative for Discovery Studios, and has expanded the role of Howard Lee (right) to executive VP of development and production for TLC.
December 10, 2015

Discovery Communications has tapped Sandy Varo Jarrell (pictured, left) as senior VP of creative for Discovery Studios and has expanded the role of Howard Lee (right) to executive VP of development and production for TLC.

In the newly created post, Varo Jarrell is charged with developing original content for network clients while overseeing the creative direction of the in-house production studio. She will report to Marc Graboff, president of global business and legal affairs, production management and studios.

Varo Jarrell most recently served as senior VP of production and development for TLC, responsible for West Coast development and oversight on original programming. Her credits include Say Yes to the DressLittle People Big WorldMy 600lb Life, Our Little Family and I Am Jazz.

Before boarding TLC, Varo Jarrell held various titles in the factual space, including head of unscripted programming and development at ABC Family; VP of reality programming and development at Lifetime; and director of alternative programming at CBS.

Lee, meanwhile, will see his current role of executive VP of development and production for the East Coast expand to include TLC’s entire production and development programming slate.

He will serve as the company’s number two creative executive under president and GM Nancy Daniels. In addition, Lee will continue his role as GM of Discovery Life Channel, where he reports to Daniels.  TLC’s West Coast development and production teams – led by Elvia Van Es Oliva, VP of development, and Jack Tarantino, VP of production – will now report to Lee.

The TLC veteran has previously had a hand in launching such network hits as 90 Day FiancéSister WivesCake Boss, Long Island Medium, Breaking Amish and Extreme Couponing.

Having joined TLC in 2008, Lee previously served as VP of development and production for the 2007 launch of Planet Green. Prior to that, he worked as VP of development for Travel Channel.

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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