ESPN Reorganizes Production Unit

Norby Williamson, ESPN executive vice president, production has re-organized the company’s production department to expand the responsibilities of several employees, to create new units to enhance creativity and collaboration across platforms, and to further emphasize ESPN’s commitment to journalism. “We consistently look at ways to innovate and evolve in response to our growing portfolio of programming,” Williamson said. “ESPN has an incredible depth of talented and creative people who are well prepared to step into expanded roles.”

The direct reports to Williamson will be Steve Anderson, executive vice president, news, talent and content operations; Rick Barry, senior vice president, programming and production, business operations; Chris Calcinari, vice president, international and Deportes production (who has a joint report to Russell Wolff, executive vice president and managing director of ESPN International); Jed Drake, senior vice president and executive producer, event production; Mark Gross, senior vice president and managing editor, studio production; Marcia Keegan, vice president, content integration and strategic planning; and Traug Keller, senior vice president, production, business divisions. Williamson reports to John Skipper, executive vice president, content.

Craig Bengtson, senior coordinating producer, who joined ESPN last August from ABC News, will now oversee each edition of SportsCenter and the SportsCenter Minute on and any future expansions of the SportsCenter brand. Bengtson will report to Gross.

David Roberts has been promoted to senior coordinating producer to oversee ESPNEWS, which as of this month is available in 60 million households. Roberts, who will report to Gross, joined ESPN in 2004 and has served as coordinating producer of SportsCenter, ESPNEWS and Baseball Tonight.

Studio/Remote Alignment for NBA and Motors
In an effort to more closely align studio and event productions, two long-time ESPN executives have assumed new responsibilities that will jointly report to Gross and Drake and oversee both studio and game productions.

Bob Rauscher, who began his ESPN career in 1980 and has overseen NFL studio coverage since 1994, won 16 Emmys and worked 22 Super Bowls, assumes the new position of vice president, NBA production. Mark Summer is promoted to senior coordinating producer and will oversee all NBA studio shows while continuing to produce NBA Countdown on ABC. Summer will report to Rauscher.

Rich Feinberg, with ESPN in remote production since 1993, takes on a similar role as vice president, motorsports. He has also captured 16 Emmys from motorsports event telecasts and the X Games.

Expanded Responsibilities for Veterans
Stephanie Druley, a senior coordinating producer who has worked on Sunday NFL Countdown since 1996, will now oversee all NFL studio coverage. Under Druley, Seth Markman is promoted to senior coordinating producer, with focus on Monday Night Countdown and NFL Live.

Bill Graff, with 15 years of ESPN experience, is promoted to senior coordinating producer, content integration and daytime programming. Graff continues to oversee the studio wraps unit and content integration and adds oversight of all of ESPN and ESPN2’s daytime studio programming, including First Take and Pardon the Interruption.

Jay Levy, a senior coordinating producer who joined ESPN in 1993, will continue to manage Baseball Tonight and the network’s highlight operation and has added all college sports studio shows to his responsibilities. Now reporting to Levy will be Michael Fountain, who has been promoted to senior coordinating producer. Fountain has been overseeing college football studio programming including College GameDay and adds college basketball.

Tim Scanlan will take on new responsibilities as vice president, event production, pro and amateur sports. Scanlan, who joined ESPN in 1996, will continue to oversee Major League Baseball and soccer and adds boxing and college sports.

Bob Toms takes on the newly created position of vice president, production enhancements and ITV. Toms will oversee ESPN’s creative services and launch two new areas – production enhancements (to distinguishing ESPN’s productions on all platforms) and interactive television production.

Additional Executive Promotions:
Charita Johnson to Vice President, Production Performance and Development
Mike Leber to Senior Coordinating Producer of ESPN’s studio bureau operation
Mark Preisler to Senior Coordinating Producer of ESPNEWS daytime
Dan Steir to Senior Coordinating Producer of, primarily, college basketball game telecasts
Tina Thornton to Senior Coordinating Producer in remote production
Dave Weiler to Vice President, Production Operations/Studio Directors
Elida Witthoeft to Senior News Editor II

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