The Murdoch family, which controls the Fox News Channel, wants to find a woman to run the channel, according to sources cited in a report today by The Hollywood Reporter.
“Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that Rupert Murdoch and his sons James and Lachlan, CEO and co-chairman of Fox News parent 21st Century Fox, have quietly put out feelers for a new head of Fox News,” the story reports. “And the preference, according to two sources familiar with the Murdochs’ thinking, is that the new leader be female.”
[To read the TVWeek Open Mic essay by Chuck Ross from April 5 in which he proposes which woman should head Fox News, please click here.]
THR adds: “The move comes as pressure is building on Bill Shine, a 20-year Fox News veteran whom Rupert Murdoch elevated to co-president, with Jack Abernethy, of Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network in the wake of the ouster of founding CEO Roger Ailes last summer. Shine runs the programming arm of the media empire, while Abernethy, also a longtime Fox News executive, runs the business side of the company, including ad sales, finance and distribution.”
The report also notes: “When Murdoch elevated Shine last fall, the move rankled some at Fox News, especially women, who saw Shine as complicit in the sins of the past. When new payouts to women who complained about [Bill] O’Reilly came to light April 1, that unease deepened, said one Fox News source. Shine was said to have been a staunch defender of keeping O’Reilly, with whom he worked for two decades.”