Colleagues say exec is right for Comcast's top spot

Steve Burke has the temperament and training for the times. That’s what friends and colleagues are saying about Comcast’s longtime No. 2 exec who will take the reins of NBC Universal once the transaction with General Electric is complete.

Burke spent a dozen years as a business and operations-oriented exec at Disney and ABC before joining Comcast in 1998. That mixed background will serve him well as he takes on the formidable task of leading NBC U in the Web 2.0 world.

“He’s a phenomenal executive,” said former Disney Studios chief Rich Frank, who had a production venture with Comcast in the mid-1990s. “He’s the kind of person you can sit down and talk to. He’s tough but he’s a good listener.”

Burke was literally raised in the broadcasting biz as the son of Daniel Burke, who was the No. 2 exec at Capital Cities/ABC from the 1970s through the mid-1990s. He surprised the biz when he left a top job at ABC for Comcast. Since then, he’s been a “true partner,” in Frank’s view, to chairman Brian Roberts in building the family-controlled firm into the largest and most forward-looking cable operator in pushing digital cable, broadband services and most recently, on-demand access.

“Steve has the right temperament to run an entertainment company in today’s world, where business models change every week,” Frank said.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0