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ABC Family skeds exec

Zappala joined net as a veep

ABC Family has upped Tom Zappala to senior VP of program acquisitions and scheduling.

Exec, who will report to cabler president Paul Lee, will continue to head up all of ABC Family’s off-net, firstrun and feature acquisitions, in addition to scheduling.

Zappala joined the network as a veep in April 2003, negotiating the deals for skeins including “My Wife and Kids,” “Smallville” and “Grounded for Life.”

“Tom has been instrumental in the strategic acquisition of key series and movies to make the channel more reflective of today’s families,” Lee said. “He has done a tremendous job and has been one of the key figures behind our ratings growth.”

Zappala was previously a senior vice president of programming at Viacom, where he oversaw programming and research for its 35 O&Os. He negotiated the conglom’s acquisitions of “That ’70s Show,” “CSI,” “Friends,” “Everybody Loves Raymond” and “Dr. Phil” as well as the broadcast windows for “The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring.”

Prior to that, Zappala was a VP-executive director of programming at Paramount, working in programming development for Par’s O&Os.

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