Genius Brands International has announced the appointment of Margaret Loesch as executive chairman of Kartoon Channel, which will launch June 15. David Neuman, former president of Walt Disney Television, has been named chief creative officer of Kartoon Channel. He will work closely with Loesch and general manager Caroline Tyre.
“I have known and admired Margaret and David for many years,” says Andy Heyward, chief executive officer, Genius Brands. “There are no two more accomplished executives in our industry than Margaret Loesch and David Neuman. One doesn’t become the president of multiple children’s networks, or the president of Walt Disney Television, respectfully, without a reputation of being ‘Best in Class.’ Their collective knowledge and relationships with the advertiser community, the creative community and the distribution community in kids’ broadcasting is at the pinnacle of the field. They play to win, and nothing less. Having Margaret and David leading Kartoon Channel!, along with general manager Caroline Tyre and director of content and acquisitions Mark Shoeman, is going to be a tremendous jump start to creating viewership and market share, advertiser demand, and attracting the most powerful creative content and marketing in the field.”
Loesch was the founding president and chief executive officer of Fox Kids Networks Worldwide, growing the channels across all metrics, where it was eventually sold to the Walt Disney Company for $5.5 billion. During this time, she launched a multitude of series, including “Power Rangers,” growing Fox Kids into the top children’s program service on television. Prior to Fox Kids, Loesch served as president and chief executive officer of Marvel Productions, and previously, president of The Jim Henson Company, and founding president and chief executive officer of the U.S. Hallmark Channel and Crown Media U.S. Most recently, she served as president of the HUB which was a joint venture between Hasbro Toys and Discovery Communications.
“I have admired David’s accomplishments and reputation as an innovator and magnet for talent for years and have had the good fortune to work extensively with Andy over the years,” says Loesch. “This is a wonderful opportunity to work with both David and Andy, and the Genius Brands’ team where I will oversee and provide advice on the creation of a new destination for kids and their families.”
As President of Walt Disney Television and Touchstone Television, Neuman oversaw “The Wonderful World of Disney,” “Boy Meets World,” “Ellen” and “Home Improvement.” Prior to that as vice president of comedy at NBC, he oversaw series such as “Cheers,” “Family Ties,” “Golden Girls” and “Alf” where under his management, NBC series received more than 100 Emmy Awards.
“The creative community is poised for new content and new ways of delivering it to today’s kids who have grown up in an on-demand non-linear world, and I look forward to hitting the ground running as we gear up for a massive June 15 launch,” says Neuman.