Andy Lack

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Person.png Andy Lack  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(media executive)
Andrew Lack.jpg
Bornborn May 16, 1947
NationalityUS
Alma materThe Gunnery, Browning School, Sorbonne, Boston University
Corporate news media executive

Andrew (Andy) Lack is a businessman, film executive and television executive, He was the chairman of NBC News and MSNBC from 2015 to 2020.[1]

Andy Lack was the first CEO of the US open government propaganda arm Broadcasting Board of Governors, appointed in January 2015, but he announced his resignation in March 2015.[2]

Prior to NBCUniversal, Lack held a series of media executive positions, including as the chairman and CEO of Bloomberg Media Group; chairman and CEO of Sony Music Entertainment; and president and chief operating officer of NBCUniversal.

Andy Lack was at NBC back when the company launched its cable news channel MSNBC in 1996. He is said to be close with the channel's longtime president, Phil Griffin.[3]

On May 4, 2020, NBCUniversal fired Lack following the backlash over his role in scuttling reporting on film executive Harvey Weinstein.[4] [5]

Early life

Lack was born in New York City to a Jewish family. He attended the Browning School, a private school in New York, before graduating from Connecticut boarding school The Gunnery.[6] He studied at the Sorbonne, University of Paris and graduated from Boston University's College of Fine Arts in 1968. After graduation, he appeared as an actor in numerous television commercials and an off-Broadway production.

Career

After graduating he worked as a producer of TV commercials, joined CBS News in 1976, following the next year with 60 Minutes and from 1978 until 1985, produced CBS Reports. He also was correspondent on The American-Israeli Connection in 1982. Lack worked with Bill Moyers during the early 80s, as producer of both Our Times With Bill Moyers (1983) and Crossroads (1984).[7]

In 1976, Lack was hired by 60 Minutes creator Don Hewitt at CBS News as a producer for the personality-driven television show Who's Who. That led to a job as a producer for 60 Minutes. Lack produced such segments as "Inside Afghanistan"[8] and "Kissinger and The Oil Embargo."[9] He wrote and directed the segment "The Real Malcolm X: An Intimate Portrait of the Man."

His work as a CBS producer includes "The Boat People" (about Vietnamese refugees),[10] "Teddy" (about Ted Kennedy) and "The Defense of the United States" (about the Cold War) with Walter Cronkite.

NBC

Lack was hired as president of NBC News in 1993. By Lack's third year, NBC Nightly News with anchor Tom Brokaw became the number-one rated evening news program, beating World News Tonight with Peter Jennings on ABC News. Lack also greatly expanded Dateline, from once weekly to multiple nights each week.

In 2001, Lack left the news division to become president and chief operating officer of NBC, the television network.

Sony

Lack joined Sony Music Entertainment in 2003 as Chairman and CEO. Amid sharply declining sales in the music industry, Lack cut the staff by 25% to about 6,000 people.

In 2004, Lack led a merger with BMG. Lack became CEO of the new Sony BMG, a 50–50 venture with Germany's Bertelsmann that resulted in the second-largest music company in the world.

At Sony BMG, he pushed the company further into video, including television programming, and had to contend with the erosion of sales because of music file-sharing services such as Napster.[11] In 2008 he left the company.

Bloomberg

In 2008, Lack returned to broadcast journalism, joining Bloomberg as CEO of its Media Group, running television, radio and digital properties, including 11 television channels internationally.[12] The New York Times reported that he cut losses in half and doubled revenue. He became chairman of Bloomberg Media Group in 2013[13] and stayed with Bloomberg until 2014.

NBCUniversal (2015–2020)

Lack rejoined NBC News and MSNBC in 2015.

In 2019, investigative journalist Ronan Farrow reported that Lack downplayed a human resources complaint of rape against Today anchor Matt Lauer in 2014. Lauer was not fired until late 2017. Farrow also reported that Lack had ordered Richard Greenberg to scuttle reporting on the Harvey Weinstein sexual abuse cases because "it was an Andy decision." Farrow later published his work in The New Yorker.[14] Farrow also reported that NBC News hired a "Wikipedia whitewasher" who removed references to NBC News's role in the Harvey Weinstein case from several Wikipedia articles, including Lack's.[15] On May 4, 2020, NBCUniversal fired Lack following the backlash over his role in killing Farrow's reporting on Weinstein.[16]

Personal life

Lack married twice. In 1970, he married Pamela Ann Blafer in a Jewish ceremony at the Temple Emanu‐El in Manhattan.[17] Lack is married to Betsy Kenny Lack, head of global brand strategy for Snapchat,[18] with whom he has two sons.



References

  1. {http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/12/21/can-msnbc-re-center-itself-andy-lack-on-breaking-news-today-and-brian-williams.html
  2. http://deadline.com/2015/03/andrew-lack-broadcasting-board-of-governors-exit-1201386021/
  3. http://money.cnn.com/2015/04/06/media/andy-lack-first-day-nbc/index.html
  4. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/04/business/media/andy-lack-nbc-steps-down.html
  5. https://deadline.com/2020/05/nbcuniversal-reorg-mark-lazarus-peacock-news-andy-lack-cesar-conde-1202925511/
  6. https://variety.com/1993/tv/news/lack-sophisticated-savvy-and-no-stranger-to-turmoil-105800/
  7. https://web.archive.org/web/20150913070357/https://www.hollywood.com/celebrities/andrew-lack-57666456/
  8. https://books.google.com/books?id=cr41_UeQwM8C&q=dan+rather+andrew+lack
  9. Lack, Andrew (January 22, 1978). "The Oil Embargo". 60 Minutes. CBS News.
  10. https://www.questia.com/magazine/1P3-1308459571/the-boat-people-as-filmed-for-cbs
  11. https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/06/09/business/media/andy-lack-career-timeline.html
  12. https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2008/12/bloomberg200812
  13. https://deadline.com/2013/07/justic-smith-bloomberg-media-group-andy-lack-551268/
  14. https://variety.com/2019/tv/news/matt-lauer-rape-nbc-ronan-farrow-book-catch-kill-1203364485/
  15. https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/ronan-farrow-overcame-spies-and-intimidation-to-break-some-of-the-biggest-stories-of-the-me-too-era/2019/10/10/9cc46c9a-eac1-11e9-85c0-85a098e47b37_story.html
  16. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/04/business/media/andy-lack-nbc-steps-down.html
  17. https://www.nytimes.com/1970/01/11/archives/pamela-ann-blafer-is-wed-here.html
  18. http://www.recode.net/2016/5/25/11776438/snapchat-hires-vanity-fair-betsy-lack-for-brand-strategy-role