Brian Frons, president of daytime for Disney/ABC Television Group, is departing the company after his contract expires at the end of January.
Replacing Frons is Vicki Dummer, who has been promoted to executive vice president of Times Square Studios and now will oversee ABC's daytime. Dummer will report to Paul Lee, president of ABC Entertainment Group.
In addition, Abra Potkin, former news and entertaiment development executive at CBS, has been hired as senior vice president of East Coast programming and development, while Ann Lewis Roberts has been promoted to senior vice president of West Coast current programming and development. Both Potkin and Roberts will report to Dummer.
Under the reorganization, Times Square Studio now will oversee both ABC's current daytime programming, as well as develop new non-scripted lifestyle and health programs for both daytime and syndication, according to ABC's statement. Shows in this division include The View, The Chew, General Hospital, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, as well as this fall's upcoming Katie and next month's The Revolution. Live! with Kelly will continue to be overseen by the ABC-owned Television Stations Group division.
In the past year, Frons has overseen the cancellation of two of ABC soap operas: All My Children and One Life to Live, decisions that were highly unpopular with the very loyal fans of both series. The cost of producing soap operas was not declining at the same rate as the shows' ratings, however, making them impossible to sustain.
Cable sudsers network, SoapNet, the home for encores of daytime and primetime soaps, will be converted to Disney Jr. next year.