David Way named president at Great Pacific Media

Thunderbird's factual division also promoted Wendy McKernan to COO as it continues to bolster its factual output from its base in Vancouver.
August 13, 2020

David Way has been promoted to the role of president at Thunderbird’s factual arm Great Pacific Media. He takes the role held by former president Blair Reekie, who has moved on from the company.

Way (pictured left), who joined the company in 2015 as creative director and later rose to SVP, will now oversee all IP development and content production for new original series, in addition to developing and managing external partnerships.

During his tenure to date, Way has led development on factual titles including Heavy Rescue: 401 (Discovery Canada), $ave My Reno and Worst To First (both for HGTV), Queen of the Oil Patch (APTN), High Arctic Haulers (CBC) and the in-production series Mud Mountain (Discovery Canada).

In addition, Wendy McKernan (right) has been promoted to chief operating officer. Since joining Great Pacific in 2013, McKernan has played a key role in developing the company’s talent recruitment system, business affairs and a “unique production management system” that has been crucial to the marketability of its factual slate, according to Thunderbird.

In her new post, McKernan will oversee all production across Great Pacific’s lifestyle and factual programming. Her production credits include Highway Thru Hell, Heavy Rescue: 401 and Airshow. The exec has also been involved in a new initiative, unveiled last year, whereby Thunderbird has assigned a team to focus specifically on developing real-life events into fictionalized IP.

Both positions are based in Vancouver, where Thunderbird is headquartered, with Way and McKernan reporting to Thunderbird president Mark Miller, who also serves as CEO of Great Pacific.

From Playback Daily

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.