National Geographic Hires Programming Chief


National Geographic Channel found a successor to John Ford as the network’s top programmer.

Former Discovery Networks U.S. official Steve Burns was named executive vice president, content. Reporting to NGC CEO David Haslingden, Burns will oversee all aspects of the network’s programming strategy and content, including development, production, acquisitions and scheduling.

Burns begins his new job July 9, and he will be based at National Geographic headquarters in Washington, D.C.

As part of a 30-year career in media, Burns spent an 11-year stint as a producer and cinematographer, then as supervising producer with National Geographic Television, producing segments of Emmy Award-winning series Explorer.

Most recently, he served as executive VP and chief science editor at Discovery Networks, responsible for Discovery Channel Quest, a series of expedition specials.

Burns succeeds John Ford, who earlier announced plans to leave the network to form a production company and pursue other interests