CNN finalizes exec lineup

Bedingfield replaces ousted Kaplan

Three weeks after CNN News Group shuffled its executive ranks, the cable news network Monday unveiled more management changes to complete the restructuring.

Sid Bedingfield has been appointed CNN/U.S. exec VP and general manager, a newly created position. He will oversee the net’s day-to-day news operations, including all aspects of programming and production. Based at CNN’s Atlanta HQ, Bedingfield, who was most recently exec VP and senior exec producer, CNN/U.S., will report to Jim Walton, president of domestic networks, CNN News Group.

“Sid is a highly experienced executive who exemplifies the commitment to journalistic excellence for which CNN is known worldwide,” said Walton of Bedingfield, who joined CNN as a writer in 1985.

Topper replacement

Bedingfield ostensibly replaces former CNN/U.S. president Rick Kaplan, although he doesn’t hold the same title. Kaplan was ousted from the cable net in late August.

Rena Golden has been promoted to the newly created position of exec VP and general manager of CNN Intl., responsible for daily oversight of CNNI’s five separate channels. Based in Atlanta, Golden will report to Chris Cramer, who was recently upped to president of CNN Intl. Networks, CNN News Group. Golden was most recently senior VP of CNN Intl.

“We’ve created a new structure where we’re looking at CNN as, in essence, two businesses — one domestic and one international,” said Philip I. Kent, president and chief operating officer, CNN News Group.

The changes are also aimed at making sure that no one person or one network will overshadow the others. “We’re trying to reinvent this organization internally to create a real collaborative creative machine,” said Kent.

He dismissed rumors that the new management structure will mean fewer day-to-day responsibilities for CNN News Group chairman Tom Johnson. “Tom will be the daily hands-on overseer of all of the editorial output of CNN,” he said.

Domestic operations

Walton will head a team of senior execs who will work across the entire CNN domestic portfolio of television nets, Web sites and new-technology platforms. Gail Evans has been promoted to exec VP, domestic networks, CNN News Group. Working closely with Bedingfield and the heads of all of the domestic nets, Evans will be in charge of program and talent development. She also will continue to oversee her current stable of network talkshows as well as guest bookings.

CNNfn exec VP Teya Ryan has been named to the newly created position of exec VP, domestic networks, CNN News Group. Ryan will focus on product development and television and Web integration across CNN’s domestic portfolio.

Wonya Lucas, who has held key marketing and network development posts within Turner Broadcasting, has been tapped senior VP of strategic marketing, domestic networks, CNN News Group. In this newly created post, Lucas will oversee all CNN domestic marketing, creative services and research functions.

CNN/U.S. VP Sue Bunda has been promoted to senior VP of the division, reporting to Bedingfield. Jennifer Maguire, formerly senior VP, programming, CNN/U.S., has been promoted to senior VP, programming and talent development, domestic networks, CNN News Group. Based in New York, she will report to Evans.

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