New York -- John D. Sawhill, who has been executive vice
president and chief operating officer at National Cable Communications, was promoted to
CEO last week, in large part due to a strong sales year.
'The CEO responsibility is obviously greater,'
Sawhill said, adding that he doesn't expect his duties to change appreciably.
The CEO title has been vacant since Robert Williams left
NCC as president and CEO last year, and there will be no COO successor, Sawhill added.
Tom Olson, president and CEO of Katz Media Group Inc., who
announced the appointment, cited the 'terrific results' posted by the spot-cable
rep firm in 1997.
Sawhill, who added that NCC enjoyed a 'terrific'
year in spot sales, said its percentage growth will easily be above budget -- somewhere
'in the high 20s or low 30s' range, once all the data are tallied.
The new CEO said he is 'very optimistic' about
the outlook for 1998, when political should add to spending increases in established and
newer categories. This year, national should 'bear fruit from our broad-based
business-development efforts,' he added. Moreover, the rep firm continues to
'work diligently' on the advertiser-churn issue -- or 'client
retention,' as he prefers to call it.
Prior to joining NCC in 1996, Sawhill was president and
general manager of WJLA-TV in Washington, D.C., an ABC affiliate.