ESPN promoted 12-year affiliate sales veteran James Brown to a new role in its programming department as senior vice president of new program development.
In this new position, Brown will be fully involved in supporting the growth and development of ESPN’s college programming and distribution efforts, and will oversee cross-platform high-school initiatives. Brown will report to Chuck Gerber, executive VP, collegiate sports.
“ESPN will seek to expand our content of high-school sports, an area of strong passion and growing popularity, and will seek to maximize properties across our portfolio of multimedia outlets,” John Skipper, ESPN executive VP of content, said in a prepared statement.“James’ business acumen and strong relationships with affiliates at the local level nationwide will help us to continue to create content that serves our fans and business partners.”
Brown, senior VP of field sales for Disney and ESPN Networks affiliate sales and marketing, oversees growing and maintaining local and regional business relationships to drive distribution, placement and promotion of all Disney and ABC Cable Networks and ESPN products and services in the United States and the Caribbean. He manages offices in Denver; Burbank, Calif.; Bristol, Conn.; and New York, where he is based. He was elevated to that post in October 2004 upon the consolidation of the Disney, ABC and ESPN affiliate sales and marketing departments.
Brown joined ESPN in 1995 as director of affiliate sales and marketing for the central region, based in Chicago.
Before ESPN, Brown spent 13 years at Bell Atlantic. Starting in 1982, he filled a variety of roles as a part of a selected group earmarked for succession planning, working in leadership roles throughout the company, including developing the sales strategy for Bell Atlantic’s entry into cable.