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HGTV makes programming, development hires as John Feld departs

The programming and development team at Discovery-owned HGTV is undergoing significant change with three hires, and the departure of one longtime executive. Joining its offices in New York are Bob Kirsh (left) ...
January 7, 2020

The programming and development team at Discovery-owned HGTV is undergoing significant change with three hires, and the departure of one longtime executive.

Joining its offices in New York are Bob Kirsh (left) and Katie Ruttan-Daigle (right), both as vice presidents of programming; and Anna Snead as senior director of development.

The appointments come as John Feld, an eight-year veteran programming executive at HGTV and DIY who most recently served as SVP of programming and development, departs from the network. Feld, who joined the network in 2012 when it was part of the Scripps Networks Interactive stable and worked out of its Knoxville headquarters, officially left his post on December 30.

“I loved my time at Discovery/Scripps as it allowed me to work with some of the most talented people in the business, especially the numerous production companies that worked tirelessly over the years to create incredible content for our many brands,” Feld (below) told Realscreen via email. “I am excited to start a new chapter in this ever-evolving world of content creation.”

feld

As for the new postings, Kirsh will be responsible for managing HGTV’s content development and production for linear, digital and streaming platforms. He reports directly to Betsy Sanner Ayala, SVP of programming and development. Most recently, the 20-year TV veteran served as an executive producer on HGTV’s A Very Brady Renovation.

Kirsh’s production and development credits include Food Network’s Worst Cooks in America, Worst Bakers and Food Network Star, HGTV’s Design Star All-Stars and HGTV Design Star, as well as CNBC’s The Deed and ABC’s Cook It Out.

Ruttan-Daigle, meanwhile, joins the channel from Scott Brothers Entertainment where she spent five years working in a variety of capacities, including executive producer, showrunner, managing director for production and EVP of development and production.

At HGTV, Ruttan-Daigle will spearhead the development of new series and specials for the network. She reports to Loren Ruch, group SVP of production and development.

Her production credits at Scott Brothers include Property Brothers at Home and Brother vs. Brother, as well as the pilot episode of HGTV’s Property Brothers: Forever Home and the Food Network special Wedding Cake Countdown with Drew & Linda.

As HGTV’s senior director of development, Snead will manage the development of new talent, as well as series and specials. She returns to the Discovery family following a stint at Momentum Content where she served as head of development. Prior to that, Snead served as director of programming development and casting at HGTV sister network Investigation Discovery. There, she developed more than 280 hours of content including See No Evil, Married with SecretsMurder Among Friends and Evil Lives Here.

“We need great storytellers with distinct voices to attract new audiences and expand our reach even as we navigate an industry in transformation,” said Ruch in a statement. “Developing compelling, creative lifestyle content with dynamic talent in the lead is exactly what Bob, Katie and Anna do best and exactly what HGTV needs more of now.”

(With files from Barry Walsh)

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