PBS' Mitchell Exiting Post As President/CEO

PBS president/CEO Pat Mitchell has confirmed that she will depart as head of the public broadcasting service when her contract expires next year.

(The Hollywood Reporter) -- PBS president/CEO Pat Mitchell has confirmed that she will depart as head of the public broadcasting service when her contract expires next year.

Mitchell told PBS staffers in an e-mail message sent Feb. 15 that she will not seek a new contract with PBS next year, a PBS spokeswoman confirmed. Mitchell's most recent three-year contract is understood to expire in June 2006.

Mitchell has headed the network since March 2000. Her tenure has coincided with a rocky period for PBS and many of its 349 affiliate stations, as corporate funding of PBS programs has slowed and the decades-old pledge-drive model of fund-raising for local stations has proven challenging in a tight economic environment.

Among the highlights of Mitchell's tenure was a deal unveiled in October to build on the successful PBS Kids program block by launching a 24-hour digital cable/satellite channel aimed at preschoolers in partnership with cable giant Comcast Corp. and HIT Entertainment. The unnamed channel is expected to debut in the fall.

More recently, Mitchell was heavily involved in what could prove a precedent-setting agreement between PBS affiliates and the nation's major cable operators to ensure carriage for most PBS affiliates on cable platforms after the affiliates make the switch to digital broadcasting beginning next year.

THE BILLBOARD BIZ
SUBSCRIBER EXPERIENCE

The Biz premium subscriber content has moved to Billboard.com/business.


To simplify subscriber access, we have temporarily disabled the password requirement.