Suzanne Scott has been been elevated to chief executive officer of Fox News, the company announced Thursday.
Scott was one of the original executives when Fox News was founded in 1996. Her appointment puts a woman in the top leadership role at the 21st Century Fox unit nearly two years after the sexual harassment scandal that brought down the division’s founding chief executive Roger Ailes.
As chief executive, Scott will be in charge of Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network. Aside from Ailes, no one has ever held the chief executive title at the division since it launched in 1996.
Since August 2016, Scott had been president of Fox News programming. She had been sharing the title of president with Jack Abernethy, who will no longer have a role in the news operation.
Abernethy remains chief executive of the Fox Television Stations Group and will move to Los Angeles, where he will work more closely with the Fox broadcast network operation. The TV stations group is expected to be the main focus of the company, being called “the New Fox,” following 21st Century Fox’s proposed to deal to sell its TV and movie production assets to the Walt Disney Company for $52.4 billion.
A statement from 21st Century Fox Chairman Lachlan Murdoch said: “Suzanne has been instrumental in the success of Fox News and she has now made history as its first female CEO. Her vision and innovation have helped create some of the most popular and lucrative primetime programs on cable and as we embark on the era of the proposed New Fox, I am confident that Suzanne’s leadership will ensure the dominance of both Fox News & FBN for years to come.”
Jay Wallace, who most recently served as president of news and editorial for Fox News, will take on the new title of president and executive editor.
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