Debby Beece

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President of Programming & Marketing, Oxygen Media

WHY WE’RE WATCHING: Beece’s programming choices gave the women’s-targeted service a sizable boost in the Nielsens last year. That momentum continued with the bow of Campus Ladies. The Jan. 8 debut of the series about middle-aged housewives going to college pushed Oxygen to its highest-rated week ever among households and women 18 to 49. Campus Ladies no doubt received a boost from the playful, multimedia campaign from new advertising agency Toy. The show builds on the leanings of Nighty Night and Suburban Shootout. The genre is a difficult one, but Beece is committed: “We have humor in our DNA and brand.”

HIGH ’05s: “Achieving our highest-rated original telecast ever with Mo’Nique’s Fat Chance. Gaining ratings among our target audience of women 18 to 49, by 19%, compared with 2004. Winning Promax awards and Gracie awards.”

PICKS IN ’06: “On the programming side, breaking out with new and different originals and continuing our consecutive rating growth streak. Last year, was our highest-rated ever and we hope to be able to say the same about 2006.” 

EXECUTIVE INFLUENCES: “Gerry Laybourne — working with her to build Oxygen, and Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, and Nick Movies before that. Tom Freston: Together we launched HA! TV Comedy Network, which became Comedy Central. Neil Braun, who taught me about the entertainment business at large.”

MY TIME: “My three kids and a dog keep me busy. But when I am not working, I create and design knitwear. I also paint.”