Capital Cities/ABC has tapped Maureen Lesourd, a former radio executive for the company, as senior vice president, affiliate relations, for ABC Television Network. She replaces longtime affiliate relations head George Newi, who retired late last year after 30 years with the outfit.
Lesourd, who reports to ABC TV Network Group president David Westin, currently is VP and general manager of Tribune Broadcasting’s WQCD-FM New York, a post she has held since May 1993.
Although Lesourd has no TV experience, she is familiar with Capital Cities/ABC. From 1981-93 she worked in the company’s radio stations division, ultimately being appointed prexy/G.M. of WRQX-FM Washington.
Lesourd will meet with ABC affiliates informally during the network’s coverage of the Super Bowl. ABC also has an affiliates meeting scheduled in February in Dallas.
Lesourd will inherit a relatively stable affiliate body. Capital Cities/ABC has just about wrapped up its search for new affiliates in markets where stations defected to Fox as a result of the weblet’s partnership with New World Communications.
In St. Louis, ABC is switching to former Fox affiliate KDNL, while it has yet to resolve its affiliate hole in Birmingham, Ala.
However the network and its affiliates still have many discussions ahead on how the changing regulatory structure will impact network-affiliate relations.