PBS SOCAL NAMES LEADING PUBLIC MEDIA EXECUTIVE AS CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Seasoned PBS/CPB Programming and Business Ventures Professional, Andy Russell Will Apply Wide-Ranging Expertise at PBS’ Flagship West Coast Station
COSTA MESA, Calif. (February 5, 2013) – PBS SoCaL, L.A.’s PBS station serving all of the southern California area, announced today that public media executive Andrew (Andy) Russell will be joining the station as chief operating officer. In this position Russell will share in the development of the overall strategic, programming and financial direction of the station. Russell brings to PBS SoCaL more than 18 years of experience with PBS and the Corporation of Public Broadcasting (CPB), where he shaped PBS’ primetime, led the creation of Ready-to-Learn service for pre-school children, and grew PBS revenues as leader of PBS Ventures. He will report to PBS SoCaL President and CEO Mel Rogers.
“Andy brings vast experience in strategic programming content, new business development, and digital, interactive media for public TV and radio, making him the perfect person to help drive our growth and guide our strategic direction. Andy is a California native with a commitment to developing local and national content for and about this region,” says Rogers. “Recently Andy has been PBS’ lead facilitator on primary station launches in Los Angeles and Orlando, so he knows today’s Southern California issues very well. I’m thrilled we were able to convince Andy to leave his important position at PBS to return to his home state. He brings tremendous talent and depth to the PBS SoCaL team.”
Russell will work across a wide range of efforts at PBS SoCaL as its COO including:
• Community service: planning and launching a new facility in Los Angeles; expanding the station’s service with local content, partnerships and special programs; and growing its educational programs for pre-school through adult learning.
• Programming: Building inventory of local programming both on-air and online.
• Over time, growing capacity to provide programs for national distribution.
• Financial resources: Creating partnerships and developing programs that will grow substantial revenue streams for programming and public services.
Previously Russell served as senior vice president, PBS Strategy and Research, where he was a member of the Core Management team responsible for content strategy, PBS system transitions, restructuring research operations, and overall key system strategic initiatives. From 2007-2010 he was senior vice president, PBS Ventures where he increased revenue and profit growth through: DVD and digital distribution of PBS programs, corporate sponsorships, e-commerce websites, PBS mobile app businesses and the first subscription service -- PBS KIDS Play! – and acquisitions and joint ventures.
From 2000-2007 Russell worked as senior vice president, Media, at CPB in Washington D.C., revitalizing television, radio and online programming, and developing programs to increase local station and international revenues. Prior to that, from 1990-2000, he worked with Accenture, a $40 billion consulting firm, in media and high technology practice, and at CPB in station development and policy planning.
“PBS SoCaL is growing quickly as the lead PBS station for the southern California area,” observes Russell. “To come on board at this time when it is expanding its audiences, membership, programming and leadership in the region is incredibly exciting. I look forward to working with Mel, the Board of Trustees and staff to develop this station as a force on the west coast media landscape.”
Russell is a native Californian who has an MBA from Stanford University, a master’s degree from Princeton University and a bachelor’s degree from UC Davis. He will be based at PBS SoCaL in Costa Mesa by early March. He also will work in Los Angeles helping PBS SoCaL establish operations in Downtown Los Angeles.
About PBS SoCaL
PBS SoCaL, formerly KOCE-TV, is Southern California’s PBS station dedicated to interactively educating, entertaining, and enlightening the greater Los Angeles area. With its three unique broadcast channels. PBS SoCaL HD, PBS OC, and WORLD TV, PBS SoCaL provides award-winning programs like Frontline, NewsHour, NOVA, Nature, and Masterpiece, as well as local productions Real Orange, SoCaL Insider With Rick Reiff, and Bookmark With Maria Hall-Brown. Through community outreach initiatives including PBS SoCaL Education, PBS SoCaL provides local schools access to new media materials that engage students in 21st century learning. Explore the future of PBS in Southern California at www.pbssocal.org.