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MTV Restructures

(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — MTV is undergoing a radical organizational structure that will allow the network to deliver even more aggressively on its multi-platform strategy. The new structure will optimally position MTV to develop and distribute the most cutting-edge, dynamic and creative programming while connecting more viewers than ever to music and entertainment.

MTV's operations will revolve around two new, highly-integrated networks. One will be aligned around the development of short-form video, music and news content for television as well as for online, VOD, broadband, wireless and other digital vehicles. The other will focus on maintaining and growing MTV's position in the television arena through the continued development of successful long-form franchises, many of which define today's youth culture.

"When I returned to MTV last year we had entered the broadband era with MTV Overdrive to great critical and user acclaim," said Christina Norman, president, MTV, "and were developing unique new wireless entertainment while our linear channel was performing better than ever. In order to continue strengthening our connection to young people in today's digital age, it became clear that we needed to adapt our organizational structure in the same way we have always adapted our programming to meet our audiences' ever-changing tastes."

"By elevating all platforms to equal footing, we have created a 21st Century matrix for how we will develop and distribute content and connect with our audience," said Brian Graden, president of Entertainment, MTV Networks Music Group and president of Logo. "The creation of these two highly intertwined universes within MTV will allow us to efficiently extend our world class content-development machine across all screens, as well as position us as entertainment leaders on all platforms."

New executive positions and reporting relationships include:

Amy Doyle, formerly vice president, Music Programming, is now senior vice president of Music & Talent. In her new role, Doyle will lead MTV's music strategy as well as record label and artist relations. Since she arrived at MTV five years ago, Doyle has embraced the multiplatform strategy and has strived to find non-traditional ways to showcase music. She has pioneered many of MTV's music initiatives including negotiating with bands like Good Charlotte to create series theme songs, enlisting hip hop artists to star in "Real World" promo campaigns, introducing soundtrack guides on, shepherding "The Leak" for and extending it to wireless and linear, and migrating emerging artists like Matisyahu and Death Cab for Cutie from mtvU to MTV.

Peter Baron, vice president, Label Relations, MTV & MTV2 is also expanding his duties by assuming programming responsibility for VOD, MHD and other emerging platforms. Building on their already strong relationships with the music industry, the MTV music group will represent all the MTV platforms, working with labels and artists to launch their albums and encompassing all the ways music fans access music content. Baron and Joanna Bomberg, VP Music & Talent, MTV, will report to Doyle.

Toni DiBari, formerly vice president of MTV's production group, is taking on the new role of senior vice president, Production. The MTV production group not only produces television, but also generates related content for Overdrive, wireless and MTV News will continue to be helmed by Ocean MacAdams, VP, MTV News.

Dave Sirulnick, formerly executive vice president, News & Production, will lead he music, production and news groups in his new role as executive vice president, MTV Multiplatform Production, News and Music. Sirulnick will connect the three together, streamlining and overseeing the creation of music and short form content for the various platforms under the MTV brand. Under this new structure, Doyle, DiBari and MacAdams will report into Sirulnick, who will continue to report to Graden.

Partnering with Sirulnick will be Ben White, vice president, Digital Media, along with other digital talent. Jason Hirschhorn continues as MTVN chief digital officer. Recently, MTV's content has extended further into the wireless space with new partners such as Amp'd and Verizon Wireless.

In broadband, White and his team's leadership in the development of MTV Overdrive were essential and since launch, have overseen an increase of more than 826% in video streams. He and his team have also transformed into an immersive entertainment experience that not only compliments on-air programming but has unique content created solely for the web. He will report to Sirulnick on content.

While Sirulnick's team is focused on music, short form content, news and new platforms, a parallel team will be solely dedicated to propelling the linear television business with half-hour and one-hour hits, primarily for MTV's 10 Spot and afternoons. Lois Curren, in her new role as executive vice president, MTV Series Entertainment and Programming and the person behind such series as "The Osbournes," "Newlyweds," "Punk'd" and "Meet the Barkers," will now be charged with all long-form television development and programming for MTV. Previously Curren, as EVP, Series Development, had overseen West Coast TV development only. Many of the shows under Curren's auspices have been among the highest rated series in channel history, and much of MTV's recent ratings success can be directly linked to her continuous string of hits.. Curren will continue to report to Graden.

Tony DiSanto, formerly senior vice president, Production, Development & Animation, has been promoted to executive vice president, Series Development & Animation. In addition to continuing to create long form series for MTV, DiSanto will expand his responsibilities to become head of Programming for MTV2. Carol Eng, senior vice president, Programming for MTV2, who has been managing MTV2's evolution to date, will now report into DiSanto. DiSanto, who has recently been responsible for such successful series as "Laguna Beach," "The Andy Milonakis Show," "Run's House" and "Wild N Out," will report to Curren on MTV and David Cohn, MTV2's general manager, on MTV2.

Paul DeBenedittis, formerly senior vice president, Program Planning & Scheduling, and now executive vice president, Multiplatform Programming, Content Strategy and Scheduling, will be responsible for strategically programming and scheduling MTV's short-form and long-form content on the appropriate platform. DeBenedittis will report to both Sirulnick and Curren.

Tina Exarhos, formerly EVP Marketing and now executive vice president of Marketing and Multiplatform Creative, will continue to manage all marketing and branding efforts for MTV's long form programming, as well as redefining how music and series are marketed in a multiplatform era. She and her team will now also extend their expertise to develop and produce compelling short-form content across all screens. Exarhos will continue to report to Norman.

Commenting on the new MTV structure, Van Toffler, president of the MTV Networks Music/Logo/Films Group concluded, "MTV is a brand that continually reinvents itself along with the tastes and behavioral shifts of its audience. This new way of aligning creative talent to tee-up linear and non-linear entertainment for the audience will enable MTV to break through the clutter, launch new music superstars and develop for platforms not yet created." –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen