People/Biz

Jana Bennett to step down as History president

Jana Bennett  is stepping down from her role as president and general manager of A+E Networks-owned History channel. After four years with A+E, Bennett is leaving to start her own production ...
May 5, 2017

Jana Bennett  is stepping down from her role as president and general manager of A+E Networks-owned History channel.

After four years with A+E, Bennett is leaving to start her own production venture, a spokesperson from A+E told realscreen. The new company will be based in London and New York, with an aim of creating content for both American and British markets.

“Now that History is back to growth, it’s time for me to start my next chapter,” wrote Bennett in an internal memo shared with realscreen.

Until a replacement is found, EVP and head of programming Paul Cabana and the rest of the History team will report directly to Paul Buccieri, president of A&E Studios and A+E Networks Portfolio Group.

Nancy Dubuc, president and CEO of A+E Networks, said in the memo that Bennett had approached her about the move in the spring, adding that she is immensely grateful for the job Bennett did during her time with A+E.

“From launching FYI to wide acclaim, to growing LMN, to leading History back into growth and securing its position as a premium brand, Jana has been a valued member of the management team,” the statement reads.

Bennett joined A+E Networks from BBC in 2013, serving as president of the Lifetime Movie Network and FYI. She was named president of History in September 2015 following the exit of Dirk Hoogstra.

Dubuc credits Bennett with building a strong lineup of historical documentary series and boosting its scripted slate, and says the company has benefited from the formats and series developed under her watch including Married at First Sight, Seven Year Switch the Tiny House franchise and Escaping Polygamy.

“I am enormously grateful for the leadership, passion and commitment [Bennett] has brought to A+E Networks,” wrote Dubuc.

Bennet said she is “confident that History will go from strength to strength and will continue to tell stories that America and the rest of the world loves.”

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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