×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Gil Schwartz to Retire as CBS Communications Chief

Gil Schwartz, CBS’ long-serving head of corporate communications, is set to retire as of Nov. 1 after more than 20 years with the company.

Schwartz’s departure marks another transition for the company that is in the midst of a massive corporate shakeup following the forced resignation of CEO Leslie Moonves on Sept. 9.

Schwartz has been well-liked among many journalists for his quick wit, colorful personality and the fact that he has moonlighted for years as a columnist and author under the pen name Stanley Bing. Schwartz noted the changes under way at CBS in the memo sent to CBS staffers on Thursday morning.

“As fans of arcane SEC filings have noted, I had the option of stepping away early this past summer, but given the exigencies of corporate life at that juncture, I elected to stay in place for a while. Now seems like a much more appropriate time to move on,” Schwartz wrote. “The corporation is establishing a new direction, full of hope and promise. And I still have a lot of writing to do, in an atmosphere of perhaps some greater serenity.”

Schwartz came to CBS in 1996 after Westinghouse Broadcasting bought the company. Schwartz had served as a PR exec for Westinghouse’s station group and its Group W programming arm from the early 1980s.

For years, Schwartz was a big hit at CBS’ annual affiliates meeting with a Robert Benchley-esque humorous presentation about the state of the network. He hosted CBS’ annual holiday party for journalists, a can’t-miss affair for anyone with a taste for industry gossip and pigs in a blanket.

Schwartz noted the evolution of the business in the years since he has been at the helm of CBS’ corporate communications wing. His final year on the job was rocked by the turmoil surrounding CBS and the legal battle with its corporate parent, National Amusements Inc., and the drumbeat of sexual misconduct allegations against his boss.

“I started at this job back when we all worked on dedicated word processors and the phrase ‘I’ll get back to you tomorrow’ was considered a rapid response,” Schwartz wrote.

“Today, it is not uncommon for reporters to call after they post a story to see if they need to make any corrections. But, as the world has changed, so have we, and I believe this department continues to define excellence in what we do. I’m very proud of that and always will be, and of all of you. So now, after a millennial lifetime at this company, I take my leave, not without a certain heaviness of heart, I do admit, but with a new and not unwelcome lightness in my step as well,” Schwartz wrote.

Here is Schwartz’s full memo:

This note is to let you all know that, effective November 1, I will be retiring from CBS.

As fans of arcane SEC filings have noted, I had the option of stepping away early this past summer, but given the exigencies of corporate life at that juncture, I elected to stay in place for a while. Now seems like a much more appropriate time to move on. The corporation is establishing a new direction, full of hope and promise. And I still have a lot of writing to do, in an atmosphere of perhaps some greater serenity.

I am also very happy to say that I leave our lean, focused Communications department in wonderful shape.  Under the guidance of Dana in New York and Chris in LA, with seasoned pros like Kelli at Corporate, Christa at News, Jen at Sports, Johanna at Showtime, Susan at Interactive, Adam at S&S and Mike at our Television Stations, and with Photo firing on all cylinders under Gail’s steady hand, I know the important messages that make us strong will keep on coming through the crazy, noisy media environment loud and clear.

I started at this job back when we all worked on dedicated word processors and the phrase “I’ll get back to you tomorrow” was considered a rapid response. Today, it is not uncommon for reporters to call after they post a story to see if they need to make any corrections. But, as the world has changed, so have we, and I believe this department continues to define excellence in what we do. I’m very proud of that and always will be, and of all of you.

So now, after a millennial lifetime at this company, I take my leave, not without a certain heaviness of heart, I do admit, but with a new and not unwelcome lightness in my step as well.

Thanks, everyone. Keep up the great work.

Gil

More TV

  • Bong Joon Ho Talks 'Parasite' on

    'Parasite' Director Bong Joon Ho Makes Late Night Debut Following Three Globe Nominations

    “Parasite” director Bong Joon Ho sat down for his first U.S. late-night appearance on “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” Monday night. The director, who received best director and best original screenplay Globen Globe nominations with co-writer Han Jin Won, plus a best foreign language nod Monday morning, did not give much away about the film’s [...]

  • Batwoman -- "Crisis on Infinite Earths:

    'Crisis on Infinite Earths' Recap: The Return of Two Supermen and a World-Ending Plan

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Crisis on Infinite Earths: Part Two,” the “Batwoman” episode of the 2019 “Arrowverse” crossover. “Crisis on Infinite Earths” set a strong tone with its opener Sunday night, as the Anti-Monitor hurtling through space obliterated Earth-38 and claimed its first superhero victim in Oliver Queen aka [...]

  • Batwoman -- "Crisis on Infinite Earths:

    'Crisis on Infinite Earths' Team Talks Oliver's Fate and Batwoman's Big Move (Spoilers)

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Crisis on Infinite Earths: Part Two,” the “Batwoman” episode of the 2019 “Arrowverse” crossover. The second hour of the CW’s “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover killed off another iconic hero — but brought one back. After Oliver (Stephen Amell) sacrificed himself in event’s first episode, [...]

  • TV News Roundup: TBS Unveils 'Miracle

    TV News Roundup: TBS Unveils Trailer for 'Miracle Workers: Dark Ages'

    In today’s TV news roundup, TBS releases the first look at Season 2 of “Miracle Workers” and Netflix announces the premiere date for “Cheer.” CASTINGS:  Nickelodeon has called on comedian and writer Adam Conover to host its new family game show “The Crystal Maze.“ In the American rendition of the U.K. series, Conover will take [...]

  • Verve

    Verve Raises Assistant Salaries by Up to 40% in Response to Fair-Pay Movement

    Verve has announced a 25-40% pay increase for its assistants and mailroom employees in response to the #PayUpHollywood movement which has been shining a spotlight on the issue of assistant pay in the industry. The agency, which represents #PayUpHollywood co-founder Liz Alper and regular advocate John August, is also changing its hours to shorten the [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content