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Posts Tagged ‘Jeff Ballabon’

Jeff Ballabon leaving CBS News

As CBS News chairman Jeff Fager and president David Rhodes settle in at the network, another executive is departing. TVNewser has learned SVP of communications Jeff Ballabon is leaving CBS after two years with the network. “With the change in leadership, it’s time for me to leave as well,” Ballabon writes in a memo to staff, obtained by TVNewser. (After the jump)

Ballabon joins two other CBS News executives who’ve left in recent weeks as Fager and Rhodes begin their tenure at the top of the news division.

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“Everyone Is Waiting For The Next Great Katie Moment”

Couric K.jpgAfter her now-famous interview of Gov. Sarah Palin, MarketWatch‘s Jon Friedman writes today, “I began to wonder fancifully whether she might finally put pressure on ABC’s Charles Gibson for the No.2 position, behind perennial ratings leader Brian Williams of NBC. But it hasn’t panned out that way.”

CBS News Executives, Friedman continues, “resent the implication that she hit a plateau with the Palin interview.”

“Katie delivers spectacular television and I think everyone is waiting for the next great Katie moment,” says CBS News SVP of Communications Jeff Ballabon. “I don’t think they’re waiting for the next Brian or Charlie moment…

“We’re in it for the long haul. That’s the bottom line.”

The Missing Baghdad Tape: Update

CBS News is explaining what happened the other night when video of President Obama’s trip to Baghdad, meant to be shared by U.S networks, went missing – a story first reported here on TVNewser.

From WaPo‘s Howard Kurtz:

The Pentagon has apologized to CBS for the lengthy delay in turning over network footage of President Obama’s visit to Iraq on Tuesday.

Television executives waited much of the day for CBS, the pool network, to provide the tape. But the handoff was bungled when soldiers could not find the CBS representative outside Camp Victory.

“The right thing to do would have been to wait at the gate until you showed. That didn’t happen…. Please accept my humble apologies for this unfortunate mishap,” wrote Joseph Edstrom, a spokesman for Gen. Raymond Odierno, to CBS.

CBS spokesman Jeff Ballabon accepted the apology, saying his network “followed the protocol” set by White House and military officials.

But Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said “CBS made this a lot harder than it had to be” by declining an offer for the military to transmit the tape by satellite from Saddam Hussein’s former palace, forcing a hand delivery “that requires a secured military convoy from Camp Victory.

Ballabon: “I Will be a Nonpartisan Member of This Team”

ballabon_2-23.jpgToday was Jeff Ballabon‘s first day as SVP of communications for CBS News, and he was greeted with a prominently featured column on the front page of HuffingtonPost.com concerning his Republican ties.

Ira Foreman, executive director of the National Jewish Democratic Council, writes, “This guy is very far out there with his partisan rhetoric.” He points to a few examples of Ballabon’s past comments, including a New York Daily News story in September 2008 about his answer, “Obama is incredibly dangerous,” to a question from an Orthodox Jewish paper, Hamodia. In fairness, the question was, “Is Obama as dangerous as some have claimed?”

Ballabon tells TVNewser: “I am very happy to be here at CBS News. I hope to make a very positive contribution for a long time to come. I will be a nonpartisan member of this team dedicated to communicating all the good news happening at CBS.”

Jeff Ballabon Joins CBS News

CBS News & Sports president Sean McManus announced the hiring of Jeff Ballabon as SVP of Communications for CBS News. Ballabon takes over for Sandy Genelius who left CBS for Sony last fall.

McManus writes to the staff, “Jeff will oversee all media relations and public affairs for CBS News, including strategy and planning, day-to-day publicity, internal and external communications, and coordination with CBS Interactive regarding CBSNews.com.”

Ballabon previously served as EVP at Primedia Television and before that held positions at Films Media Group, Channel One News and Court TV. He left Primedia to found Ballabon Group, a public-affairs consultancy. On the Ballabon Group Website, there is a list of testimonials, including this one from G. Gordon Liddy: “When Jeff Ballabon tells you he can do something, consider it done, and done well.”

McManus’ note to the staff is after the jump…

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