Longtime HBO execs Karen Jones, Ronni Cobern-Basis and Laura Young are expanding their roles throughout WarnerMedia’s entertainment and direct-to-consumer units, a restructuring of the company’s communications exec team amid the departure of veteran HBO comms chief Nancy Lesser, who is leaving her post after 35 years at the premium cabler.
“When I arrived here a few months ago, I was struck by the depth and breadth of talent across the entire organization,” said WarnerMedia global communications executive vice president Kevin Brockman in a statement. “In crafting our new structure, I focused on creating synergies across the portfolio where I could and tapping the best talent to lead our efforts. Karen, Ronni and Laura are each experts in their fields, wildly respected both internally and externally, and more than deserving of their new roles. Together with the other members of my senior team, and alongside the best teams in the business, I’m sure we’ll continue to set the bar for excellence in communications for years to come.”
Jones has spent more than 20 years as an HBO communications exec, most recently as senior VP of media relations. In her new position as exec VP of communications, she will oversee all communications related to HBO entertainment programming, managing both the Los Angeles and New York teams and working with HBO programming president Casey Bloys and HBO business and legal affairs exec VP Glenn Whitehead.
“Over the two decades that I’ve been at HBO, I’ve been tremendously privileged to have had the best in the business as my mentors and colleagues,” said Jones. “I am honored to take on this expanded area of responsibility and am very excited about the richness of programming on HBO’s upcoming slate.”
Cobern-Basis, who has dedicated the last 25 years to the premium cabler, most recently served as senior VP of talent relations. Her new role will have her overseeing all talent relations, events and awards efforts at WarnerMedia’s entertainment and DTC divisions, including HBO, TNT, TBS, TruTB and HBO Max, the latter of which launches in the spring.
“As a long-time employee of HBO, I’ve seen and been a part of many changes that have turned this company into the leading premium network that it is today,” said Cobern-Basis. “I am honored and excited to be able to continue in my new capacity and to be a part of the WarnerMedia family as it redefines itself, expands the limits of entertainment and continues to set new industry standards.”
Young, who has spent over two decades at the company’s corporate affairs unit, most recently served as senior VP of corporate affairs and regional PR. Her new role will include oversight of all corporate and brand communications, market PR, digital PR, regional and affiliate communications, including HBO, TNT, TBS, TruTV and HBO Max.
“I am very excited to bring together such a passionate, talented group of leaders to communicate the vision and strategy of WarnerMedia Entertainment’s businesses and brands,” said Young. “Through their dedication and experience, we are well-positioned to engage with consumers and press about the dynamic and innovative things ahead for our company.”