1. Laura Kennedy, 34
Executive VP, corporate development, Lionsgate
Kennedy was a key player in Lionsgate’s evolution into a powerhouse global entertainment company, with roles in acquisitions of Summit Entertainment and TVGN, while maintaining the company’s investment in syndicator Debmar-Mercury. “It’s important to always keep an open mind and be respectful,” she says. “A leader brings out the best in everyone they’re working with.”
2. Tom Huffman, 30
Senior VP and head of alternative, Tribune Studios, WGN America
Huffman has quickly risen to the executive tiers in the unscripted community. Before his WGN hire, he served as development and production VP at VH1, overseeing 11 series including “Couples Therapy,” “Rehab With Dr. Drew,” and “Hollywood Exes.”
3. Lauren Moffat, 29
VP, comedy development, Sony Pictures TV
Moffat helped shepherd the studio into one of its best pilot-to-series conversion years in more than a decade. Series that landed at networks include CBS’ “Bad Teacher,” NBC’s “The Blacklist” and Showtime’s “Masters of Sex.” For next season, Moffat already has numerous scripts in the development pipeline.
4. Vanessa Grunstein, 32
VP, business and legal affairs, Ryan Seacrest Prods.
Grunstein exercised her legal expertise at Warner Music and MTV Australia before moving to NBC Universal, where she has led programming negotiations for E!, Esquire and Wilshire Studios. As of October, she’s RSP’s first inhouse legal executive, negotiating production and development deals with producers, talent and networks, while also managing licensing and distribution agreements.
5. Boris Gartner, 30
VP, strategy and new initiatives, news, Univision
Gartner is part of Univision’s youthful culture. He has helped spearhead three key partnerships: a joint venture with ABC News to launch the Fusion English-language cable network; a pact with Participant Media to co-produce 10 docs in English and Spanish; and a partnership with Penske Media Corporation the parent company of Variety, to produce multiplatform entertainment news content for existing Univision News programming.
6. Jason Bergsman, 34
Senior VP, the Chernin Group
Bergsman focuses on strategic investments in digital media and online video, including Fullscreen; Europe’s YouTube network Base79; and MiTu, a Latino YouTube brand. He’s been instrumental in the build-out of TCG’s Asian media investments and in securing its investments from Providence Equity Partners and Qatar Holding.
(Profiles by Andrew Barker, Iain Blair, Peter Caranicas, Randee Dawn, Marc Graser, Carole Horst, Maane Khatchatourian, AJ Marechal, Alex Stedman, Allegra Tepper)