National Geographic Television appoints Brooke Runnette as president

Runnette joined National Geographic Channels as VP of development and special projects earlier this month following a stint at Discovery, where she exec produced 'Shark Week.'
November 26, 2012

Brooke Runnette, who joined National Geographic Channels from Discovery Channel as a vice president of development and special projects earlier this month, has been named president of National Geographic Television (NGT).

Runnette served as executive producer and director of development for specials, including the popular ‘Shark Week’ strand, while at Discovery. She will now oversee the production arm of National Geographic, reporting to John Fahey, National Geographic Society chairman and CEO.

She succeeds Maryanne Culpepper, whose departure was announced this past summer.

“Our top priority at National Geographic Television is finding and producing the best content and original programming to support the international growth and influence of our cable channels around the world,” said Fahey in a statement.

“Brooke joined the National Geographic Channels just as we were searching for the right executive to lead our television production group, and we quickly realized that she was the perfect fit for that key role – with the passion, drive, experience and industry knowledge that can continue and build the National Geographic Television franchise. Brooke’s track record speaks for itself, and we are excited to have her on our team,” he said.

“We were thrilled to have Brooke join National Geographic Channels, and this next step will further our important partnership with National Geographic Television,” added National Geographic Channels CEO David Lyle. “The role of NGT in expanding upon our recent success will be critical, and Brooke is exactly the partner we will need to make this happen.”

She will continue to executive produce the upcoming Nutopia-produced series The 80s: The Decade that Made Us, which is slated to air on National Geographic Channels in spring 2013, as she transitions into her new role.

Runnette served as exec producer for the ‘Shark Week’ strand for four years, and under her watch, the 2010 edition racked up the highest ratings in its history.

For her part, Runnette said she is “beyond excited” about the new post, adding, “The power of the National Geographic brand is unparalleled, and I look forward to working with the team at NGT in producing relevant, entertaining and powerful programming that becomes part of the television zeitgeist.”

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 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.