CBS Promotes Deborah Barak to President of Business Operations

CBS Entertainment veteran Deborah Barak has been upped to president of business operations for the Eye.

The promotion expands Barak’s oversight to include business operations for CBS News, in addition to the CBS Entertainment programming division and CBS Television Studios production arm.

Barak is one of the television industry’s most highly regarded business affairs executive with a long track record of innovative dealmaking in her 30 years at CBS. She is a trusted lieutenant of CBS Corp. president-CEO Leslie Moonves.

“Debby’s business acumen, deal-making skills and strategic vision have been instrumental in supporting the success of our programming and overall Entertainment business,” Moonves said. “She is a forward-thinking executive who is always one step ahead on how new business models can work to build and enhance content assets.”

In addition to assuming responsibility for CBS News’ business operations, Barak’s promotion now has her reporting directly to Moonves. Previously, she reported to CBS Entertainment chairman Nina Tassler, who is exiting her post at year’s end, and CBS TV Studios president David Stapf.

Barak had served as exec VP of business operations for the CBS Network Television Entertainment Group since 2010. She’s been at the center of all of the network’s big deals for more than two decades. She was instrumental in hammering out the SVOD-windowing strategy for series such as “Under the Dome,” “Extant” and “Zoo” that has allowed CBS to expand with scripted programming in the summer months. Back in 2000, she crafted CBS’ first deal for “Survivor,” which became a template for reality series agreements.

Barak also represents CBS on the board that oversees the CW network for CBS and Warner Bros.

Barak joined CBS in 1985 as broadcast counsel on the West Coast. She rose steadily through the legal and business affairs ranks until taking over all of business affairs in 2004.

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