Scripps Names Samples President of HGTV

Sep 12, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Jim Samples, who was forced out as general manager of Cartoon Network after a promotional stunt for its Adult Swim offshoot blew up in Boston, has been named president of Scripps Networks’ HGTV.
Mr. Samples will succeed Judy Girard, who is retiring. He will start Oct. 1 and work with Ms. Girard until she steps down later this year.
“This is by no means a makeover. It’s the best of both worlds as we bring in a proven industry executive to build on the long-running success of one of America’s most admired television networks,” said John Lansing, president of Scripps Networks.
“Like Judy, Jim knows how to create compelling, original programming that viewers love while also broadening the appeal of the brand to attract new audiences,” Mr. Lansing added.
Mr. Samples had been rising through the ranks at Cartoon Network parent Turner Broadcasting until the Adult Swim incident. Promotional light boxes attached to bridges and other structures in several cities caused a panic in Boston. The devices appeared suspicious to law enforcement officials, who shut down bridges, closed roads and stopped trains, snarling rush hour traffic. Turner wound up paying $2 million to cover the cost of the incident to local governments.
Adult Swim ratings continued to rise.
Mr. Samples will report directly to Burton Jablin, executive vice president of Scripps Networks, who oversees content and brand strategy for all the networks.
In a statement Wednesday, Mr. Samples said he expects to work closely with Scripps Networks’ burgeoning Interactive Group as well as the company’s new-business development team to create new growth opportunities and brand extensions for HGTV
“HGTV has expanded the definition of ‘home’ in the last few years to broaden its appeal and reach new audiences while still retaining its very loyal core viewers,” Mr. Samples said. “Few things are more important than your home, whatever and wherever that may be. Home is central to everyone’s life, and HGTV is creating content that is both relevant and entertaining to today’s consumer.”
(Editor: Horowitz)


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