Variety Executive Editor Debra Birnbaum will be leaving her post of four and a half years to join Amazon as director of awards. Her last day at Variety will be Nov. 23.
Birnbaum has led Variety’s TV team and coverage since joining the news organization in 2014, serving both as editor and writer of some of the publication’s strongest cover stories, including her recent profile of Robin Wright and her takeover of “House of Cards.”
Along with her many newsroom and managerial duties, Birnbaum has overseen Variety’s annual TV awards coverage and gold standard Emmy standalones. She has also moderated numerous industry panels with top talent and led the charge on Variety’s award-winning TV Actors on Actors series.
“We will sorely miss Debra and all of the enormous contributions she has made to our organization—both from an editorial and business perspective,” says Claudia Eller and Andrew Wallenstein, Variety’s co-editors-in chief. “Her passion and tireless work ethic has been nothing less than spectacular. Just as Debra has been a major asset to Variety, we know she will succeed in her new capacity at Amazon and we look forward to working together on many stories to come.”
Birnbaum will begin her tenure at Amazon on Dec. 3.
“I’m so grateful to Claudia and Andy and everyone at Variety for all of their support and encouragement,” said Birnbaum. “I’m excited for this next chapter in my career, and I couldn’t be more proud of the work of our TV team.”
Birnbaum’s successor as Executive Editor, TV, is expected to be announced shortly.