Ones to watch

Oct 14, 2002  •  Post A Comment

Barbara “Bo” Argentino
Executive vice president, advertising sales, Sony Pictures Television
Although she keeps a relatively low profile compared with other women of power in the TV industry, “Bo” Argentino gets a lot done behind the scenes. She is responsible for sales operations for some of television’s most popular commodities, including Sony’s first-run and off-network shows such as “Seinfeld,” “Pyramid” and “Ricki Lake.” She also directs sales activities for DirecTV. Since joining the studio in 1994, Ms. Argentino has quickly scaled the ladder from sales manager to executive VP. Before joining Sony, she served as an account executive for NBC Television and spent several years at Grey Advertising as a network buyer and a media director.
Elaine Bauer-Brooks
Senior vice president, programming and development, Twenthieth Television
The newly promoted executive is responsible for programming activities for all of Twentieth Television’s first-run product, including “Divorce Court,” “Texas Justice,” “Good Day Live,” this fall’s “The Rob Nelson Show” and Twentieth’s latest test strip “Ex-Treme Dating.” Additionally, she will oversee the development of first-run programming to be aired on the Fox Television Stations and in the national television marketplace, a key position with Twentieth, considering moves into prime time, late-night and cable.
Susan Brooks
Senior vice president, William Morris Agency
Ms. Brooks is the senior female executive at one of the television industry’s most influential talent agencies. As a senior VP, she is involved in virtually every TV deal that goes down at WMA. She has negotiated recently for actors Michael Douglas and Sean Hayes (“Will & Grace”), singer Whitney Houston and comedians Bill Cosby and Lily Tomlin, among others. As adviser to more than 50 television agents on two continents, Ms. Brooks’ expertise extends to network, syndication, cable, interactive, animation and emerging media.
Hilary Estey McLoughlin
Executive vice president and GM of Telepictures Productions
Promoted by the company last summer, Ms. Estey McLoughlin oversees day-to-day operations of the com- pany, which produces prime-time series such as “The Bachelor” on ABC, cable series such as “Slamball” on TNN and syndicated series such as “Celebrity Justice” and the upcoming Ellen DeGeneres talk show.
Sheila Nevins
Executive vice president, original programming, HBO
In her current position since April 1999, Sheila Nevins now has some gigantic shoes to fill. She must build upon the hugely successful legacy of veteran programmer Chris Albrecht, promoted in July to CEO of the pay channel. Ms. Nevins brings to the job her own resume of solid achievement. The HBO documentary unit, which she headed for nearly 20 years, has won numerous Oscars, Emmys and Peabody Awards-including the first Peabody ever awarded to a cable service. Her biggest task will be to keep churning out the winning programs that keep subscribers paying a premium for HBO each month.
Jeanne Newman
Entertainment attorney and partner at Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman & Warren
One of the most powerful female entertainment attorneys in television, Ms. Newman represents several of the biggest non-scripted series producers in Hollywood, including Endemol Entertainment USA (NBC’s “Fear Factor,” CBS’s “Big Brother”), Renegade Productions (“Blind Date”) and Celador Entertainment (“Who Wants to Be a Millionaire”). She also handles deal negotiations for emerging show runners and executive producers of scripted series, including Amy Sherman Palladino (The WB’s “The Gilmore Girls”), Ann Donahue (CBS’s “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation), Tim Kring (NBC’s “Crossing Jordan”) and Marti Noxon (UPN’s “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”).
Amber Pollard
Agent, TV department, Endeavor Talent Agency
At the young age of 26 and just a few years out of the University of Southern California’s storied School of Cinema, Ms. Pollard has-in just two years-become one of Endeavor’s premier packagers of long-form movies and miniseries. Ms. Pollard also slotted several of the rotating directors-including Mikael Solomon (“Alias,” “The Agency”)-in HBO’s Emmy Award-winning “Band of Brothers” miniseries. Her other long-form packaging efforts include setting up noted writer Hank Steinberg (“CSI,” “Without a Trace”) with director Robert Dornheim on the critically well-received FX telefilm “RFK” and booking writer John Gray for ABC’s remake of “Brian’s Song” last season. Her long-form efforts also extend to the development of prospective TV series: Client Ken Olin (“thirtysomething”) is set to direct a two-hour back-door pilot adaptation of the movie “Phenomenon”; Ron Hutchinson (“The Island of Dr. Moreau”) will write USA Network’s limited series adaptation of “Traffic”; and Lynn Siefert (“Once and Again”) will pen an ABC pilot starring Glenn Close.
Angela Shapiro
President of ABC Family Channel
Formerly head of ABC Television’s daytime programming, Ms. Shapiro became matriarch of ABC Family in March 2002. She has a tough charge to stabilize a service many consider to be the red-haired stepchild of the Disney family. After angering viewers over the summer by canceling the critically acclaimed but low-rated “State of Grace,” Ms. Shapiro has said that she is trying to find the proper focus for the cable channel. For now, ABC Family carries repurposed programs from ABC TV along with a smattering of original programs, movies and occasional sports telecasts.
Pamela Thomas-Graham
President and CEO, CNBC
An erstwhile murder-mystery writer (you can still find her books on Amazon.com), this Harvard-educated lawyer has set about writing a new future for struggling CNBC. Once the beacon for capitalistic surfeit, the financial news channel has hemorrhaged viewers since the stock market began its tumble. Still, CNBC generates half a billion dollars in revenue a year-a pretty good platform from which to rebuild. Since her appointment, Ms. Thomas-Graham has stressed analysis and depth in CNBC’s programming in an effort to lessen its reliance on play-by-play market coverage.
Doreen Wade
President, Freedom Broadcasting
Doreen Wade has worked her way up the management ladder at Freedom Broadcasting since joining the company in 1978, serving as general manager of TV stations in Providence, R.I.; Albany, N.Y.; and West Palm Beach, Fla. She also serves as secretary/treasurer of the CBS Affiliates Advisory Board. In her new position, Ms. Wade oversees operation of eight stations, including five CBS and three ABC affiliates. She will remain anchored at Freedom’s WPEC-TV in West Palm Beach, where she has lived since 1999.