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Bromstad aims to return NBC to glory days

Restoring net's pre-eminent perch a tall order for exec

Angela Bromstad says NBC’s fall season bears her partial stamp, with a whiff of what’s to come as she strives to bring the once-mighty Peacock network back to its glory days.

“I think we have fallen short in the past couple of years, and it’s our goal to bring back high-quality, sophisticated dramas and comedies,” Bromstad says. “Our brand is clear. We don’t do the hyper-reality of ‘Grey’s Anatomy.’ We are grounded. We do ‘Parenthood’ rather than ‘Brothers & Sisters.’ ”

As of last December, the programming exec and producer oversees creative affairs for all scripted entertainment programming aired on NBC and produced by Universal Media Studios.

The daughter of a bookstore owner, Bromstad once dreamed of becoming an actress. That changed after an early marriage and the birth of her daughter when she was a junior at Southern Methodist U. When she became a single mom, she needed a more stable income.

“But I wanted to be in entertainment, so I landed a job at a TV production company (Telepictures),” Bromstad says. “Freyda (Rothstein) hired me as an assistant and made me a producer.”

She learned her craft at the knee of Rothstein and then started zipping up the ranks at NBC beginning in 1994. She parachuted right into development season when she was named to her current post at the end of 2008.

“I think I’m very specific about not programming to my personal tastes, but to listen to what people are saying outside of the Hollywood community,” Bromstad says. “I have a lot of life experiences. I’m now happily married with a grown daughter and a teen-aged son. I’m drawn to bad boys, but I’m Laura Petrie at heart. I understand a lot of different points of view, which helps me make good programming decisions.”

Bromstad says the much-buzzed Jay Leno move to primetime allows the network some breathing room both creatively and financially.

“There may be skepticism, but I think writers and producers still want to be at NBC,” Bromstad says. “And we want to continue the NBC legacy.”

IN A NUTSHELL

Job title: President, primetime entertainment, NBC and Universal Media Studios

Mentor: Freyda Rothstein

Career mantra: “Stay focused, stay positive, don’t get caught up in the politics.”

Leisure pursuit: Reading

Philanthropic passion: CASA — Court Appointed Special Advocate for children.

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