Channing Dungey named chairman of Warner Bros. Television

The former Netflix exec and ABC president has earned another high-level gig

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Channing Dungey, who made entertainment industry history as the first Black woman to run a broadcast network when she was named head of ABC Entertainment, has landed another high-profile gig just weeks after leaving another one, according to multiple outlets.

Dungey has been named chairman of Warner Bros. Television, which was recently folded into WarnerMedia’s Studios and Networks Group. That group also includes HBO, DC, the Cartoon Network, TBS, TNT, TruTV and Wizarding World, among other content and entertainment areas.

“The Warner Bros. Television Group is the recognized industry leader in content creation and a true destination for talent based on its ability to produce across all genres and for all outlets,” Dungey said in a statement provided to entertainment outlets.

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“I’m thrilled to be joining the company at such a pivotal time in its history and look forward to working with my new colleagues at Warner Bros. and across the Studios and Networks Group to build on the incredible work of my predecessor, Peter Roth. This is such an electric time in our industry, and we have so much opportunity available to us between Warner Bros.’ core businesses and HBO Max, I cannot wait to dive in,” she continued.

Dungey, 51, departed Netflix on Oct. 9 per the Hollywood Reporter for “another opportunity.” As the VP of Original Content and head of Drama, she was behind several big projects for the streamer, including Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam CJ Walker and Shonda RhimesBridgerton, which debuts on Netflix on Christmas Day.

In her short time there, Dungey also helped Netflix make major deals with content creators like Rhimes, who she championed at ABC, Kenya Barris, Regina King, Mara Brock Akil, and the Obamas’ Higher Ground Productions, which won an Emmy this year for American Factory.

Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit 2018 - Day 2
President of ABC Entertainment Group Channing Dungey speaks onstage at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit 2018 at Ritz Carlton Hotel on October 2, 2018 in Laguna Niguel, California. (Photo by Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for Fortune)

Dungey was at Netflix for less than two years after spending the previous 14 at ABC, ultimately becoming the head of ABC Entertainment. She was involved in the development of Once Upon a Time, The Good Doctor and Rhimes’ juggernaut shows Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder, both starring Black female leads. She was there when both Roseanne and Black-ish ran into major controversies.

Show creator Roseanne Barr was ultimately fired from her own Roseanne reboot after a racist tweet in May 2018. Also in 2018, Barris’ controversial Black-ish episode, “Please Baby Please” about the Colin Kaepernick anthem protest was shelved when he and ABC didn’t see eye-to-eye about the episode’s content.

The veteran executive who is the older sister of actress Merrin Dungey, will begin her role in 2021 and will report to Ann Sarnoff, the Chair and CEO, for WarnerMedia Studios and Networks Group.

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“This is a homecoming of sorts for Channing, who was a production executive at Warner Bros. early in her career, and we’re excited to have her rejoin the Studio,” Sarnof said in a statement.

“Channing is one of the most talented, visionary, creative and respected executives working in television today. She has impeccable taste, a breadth of experience covering all platforms and genres, incredible relationships across the creative community and a keen sense of what’s next and how best to get it to audiences. She’s a great choice to lead the Television Group as it continues to grow its production operations for HBO Max, while also maintaining its standing as the industry’s leading independent supplier of programming to all outlets.”

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