Exec on the rise makes History cool

Younger viewers for network's 'Ice Road Truckers'

During Nancy Dubuc’s two-year tenure at History (where she was recently promoted to president and general manager), the net has launched its highest-rated series and specials to date — among them, edgy, hands-on reality shows “Ax Men” and “Ice Road Truckers” — and lowered its median viewer age by three years to 48.

“We’re competing with a lot more channels, in a much bigger universe, and for us to cut through, it takes that much more effort,” Dubuc says. “We never take for granted what’s working today, because you don’t know that it’s going to work tomorrow.”

Projected end-of-year numbers for 2009 look better than last year’s, according to Dubuc, who is credited with evolving the History brand, right down to the tweaked H logo.

“It’s our best year, our youngest year, our best summer — August by itself is up 20% over last August,” she says. “But you’re not going to reach the ratings finish line and not have to keep going.”

Prior to her History post, Dubuc supervised the development and creation of nonfiction programming for A&E. There she spearheaded “Growing Up Gotti,” “Dog the Bounty Hunter,” “Intervention,” and others. She also created A&E IndieFilms.

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