Scripps Networks has promoted Barton Jablin and Kathleen Finch to senior roles at the company, naming the first its new chief operating officer and the other its new head of programming and content. In doing so, the operator of lifestyle-focused cable networks is setting in place a new level of senior management under chief executive Kenneth Lowe.
Jablin, who will report to Lowe, will oversee sales, distribution, programming, digital and strategic planning for the company,and will also coordinate efforts between Scripps Networks’ domestic and international programming arms.
Finch, currently president of HGTV, DIY Network and Great American Country, will take overall responsibility for content across all six of Scripps’ domestic networks including Food Network, Cooking Channel and Travel Channel. She will work out of Scripps Networks’ offices in Knoxville and New York City, and will report to Jablin.
The executive appointments take place one day after Scripps announced that Brooke Johnson, the longtime chief of Food Network and Cooking Channel, had elected to step down.
Jablin was part of the team that launched HGTV in 1994, supervising production of the network’s original programming slate as executive producer. He has since held a series of senior production and programming roles within the company. He was appointed to president of Scripps Networks in 2013. Prior to joining HGTV, Jablin worked for more than 10 years in television news, including roles at WBBM-TV in Chicago and KTTV in Los Angeles.
Finch joined Scripps Networks in 1999 as senior vice president of primetime programming at Food Network, then promoted to lead HGTV and DIY. She was previously a journalist, notably spending 12 years as a producer for CBS News.
Scripps also named Shannon O’Neill, president of Travel Channel, as its managing director of finance and operations for its U.S. networks. O’Neill will report to Lori Hickok, Scripps Networks’ chief financial officer.