Press release from ABC Family, Oct. 8, 2014:
Karey Burke has been named Executive Vice President Programming and Development, ABC Family. It was announced today by Tom Ascheim, President, ABC Family, to whom she will report. A highly respected force in the creative community, Burke joins the network with extensive experience in programming, development and production, having worked across all genres of television as a producer, buyer and seller.
Burke has overseen such Emmy award-winning shows as “Friends,” “West Wing,” “Will and Grace” and “ER.” She also has solid experience in reality programming with “Beauty & the Geek,” “True Beauty” and “Game Show in My Head,” among others. She was an early pioneer in the digital space as a partner with Ashton Kutcher at Katalyst Films where she oversaw the television division and executive produced their first scripted series, the critically acclaimed “Miss Guided.” Most recently her production company, Dark Toy Entertainment, has had an overall deal with ABC Studios.
In her new position, Burke will accelerate and amplify the high-quality, brand-defining content ABC Family is best known for. She will oversee all scripted and unscripted development and current original programming, in addition to casting and talent development. She will also be responsible for creating and executing a cohesive programming strategy for multiple platform distribution.
In making the announcement, Ascheim said, “Karey is a proven hit maker, has worked across all genres of television and successfully held different roles as a buyer, seller and producer. She is a dynamic leader with a vision for our programming that will result in more stand-out, must-commit, must-share content. In collaboration with the programming team, she will continue to grow the slate of successful series and build an environment for creativity to flourish. We are thrilled to have her lead our creative vision.”
Burke added, “I admire what ABC Family has accomplished and am honored to be a part of growing its future. I have a house full of ABC Family viewers and am keenly aware of what the network does right. I’m inspired to be a part of growing the next wave of appointment viewing.”
In June of 2010 Karey Burke partnered with director Todd Holland (“Malcolm In the Middle,” “The Larry Sanders Show”) to form Dark Toy Entertainment, a production company first housed at NBC Universal and then at ABC Studios. In its first year, Dark Toy produced “Free Agents” for NBC. The company quickly followed that up with the comedy “Go On,” starring Matthew Perry.
Previously, Burke joined forces with Ashton Kutcher and Jason Goldberg as the third partner in their company, Katalyst Films. Burke oversaw the television division and a busy slate of scripted and reality programming, including “Miss Guided” and “The Beautiful Life,” in addition to the groundbreaking digital series “Blah Girls” and “Katalyst HQ.” Prior to joining Katalyst, Burke was partnered with Jamie Tarses in an overall production deal with NBC Universal Television. Burke served as Executive Vice President of Prime Time Series at NBC from 1999 until 2003. In this role, Burke oversaw production of all primetime comedy and drama programming, including such Emmy award-winning shows as
“West Wing,” ”Will and Grace” and “ER”. During this time, she supervised the development of such acclaimed series as “Freaks and Geeks,”” Scrubs,” ”American Dreams,” “Boomtown,” “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” and “Ed.”
A native of Orange, California, Burke attended UCLA where she graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a bachelor’s degree in communication studies.