Outdoor Channel named veteran programming executive Jim Liberatore as its new CEO, replacing Tom Hornish who will leave the company after a transition period,.
Liberatore, who most recently served and president of regional sports network SportsTime Ohio, will assume his new position effective immediately.
The appointment comes after Outdoor Channel was acquired by Kroenke Sports and Entertainment in May for about $267 million.
"Jim has an outstanding track record of building and growing successful cable network brands and we will benefit from his expertise, industry relationships and vision,” Kroenke Sports CEO Jim Martin said in a statement. “As we work with Jim to chart the next phase of Outdoor Channel's expansion, we will look to fully maximize the potential of this great franchise for our viewers, advertisers and business partners."
Earlier this week, NFL Network named Lorey Zlotnick its senior vice president of marketing. She had been serving in the same capacity for Outdoor Channel.
Liberatore served as president of SportsTime Ohio since 2006, where he was responsible for the launch of the Northern Ohio sports network, home to Major League Baseball's Cleveland Indians. SportsTime Ohio was purchased by Fox Sports Media Group in December for about $235 million.
Prior to his stint at SportsTime, Liberatore was president of motor sports network Speed Channel for five years and has held executive positions at Fox Sports/Sunshine Network and Madison Square Garden.
"I am thrilled to be at a network with a loyal, passionate and engaged viewership base, and look forward to continuing to serve that passion and rewarding that loyalty," LIberatore said in a statement. "Outdoor Channel is well positioned to build on its success with the support and resources of KSE, as well as the network's talented operating team. I look forward to working closely with KSE, Tom Hornish and the rest of the Outdoor Channel executive team in the weeks ahead as I visit with our employees, partners and advertisers. The future is exceedingly bright for Outdoor Channel and I am confident we can continue to grow our leadership and influence in serving the nation's outdoor enthusiast market."
Hornish has been with Outdoor Channel since 2004. In a statement, Martin thanked the long-time executive for his outstanding service to the network, adding that in the past nine years “Tom has played a pivotal role in guiding Outdoor Channel's growth, securing top-rated content and strengthening the network's relationships across the industry. A true outdoor enthusiast with a passion for hunting and fishing, we look forward to continuing to work with Tom during the transitional period and wish him all the best in his future endeavors."
Hornish added that he has enjoyed being part of the network’s success and working with its top-knotch team. "Under the ownership of KSE, the future of Outdoor Channel has never been better. As I make plans for the next stage of my career, I would like to thank everyone at the company, as well as the team at KSE, for their strong support. I look forward to working with Jim in making this a very smooth and productive transition."