Atlas Media maps out role for Waite

Exec was previously CEO of Banyan Prods.

NEW YORK — Atlas Media, one of the biggest independent producers of nonfiction TV series for cable networks, has hired Jeanne McHale Waite for the new post of senior VP-general manager.

Waite was previously CEO of one of Atlas’ biggest reality-show competitors on the East Coast, Banyan Prods.

Bruce David Klein, president and exec producer of the New York-based Atlas, said Waite’s recruitment was a necessity: Atlas is riding herd on a record volume of production, a total of 55 hours of new programming this past summer alone.

Atlas has rewarded two of its workhorse executives with promotions: Steve Holtzman to VP of production and Andrew Scher to VP of production relations.

The Atlas lineup of current and recent series includes “Dr. G: Medical Examiner” and “Skeleton Stories” for Discovery Health, “It Could Happen Tomorrow” for the Weather Channel, “American Eats” for the History Channel and “Behind the Bash” for Food Network.

Klein said he tries to keep a balance between series generated within Atlas and series commissioned by cable nets. Atlas also tries to hang on to as many backend rights to its shows as possible, he added, in order to accumulate programming assets that will pump up the corporate value of Atlas Media.

Three networks have commissioned programming from Atlas for the first time: Fox Reality, National Geographic Channel and GSN.

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