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Posts Tagged ‘Mark Lukasiewicz’

‘Primetime LIVE!’ 25 Years Later

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There was a big reunion last night to commemorate the 25th anniversary of ABC’s “Primetime Live.”

About 100 former correspondents, editors, researchers, PAs, APs, and photographers celebrated at the home of author Holly Peterson, who was a researcher on the show. Diane Sawyer was in attendance. Her co-anchor Sam Donaldson sent his regards from Albuquerque, where he now lives.

ABC News president Roone Arledge created the show in 1989. He wooed Sawyer away from “60 Minutes” to be the co-anchor for the new live primetime newsmagazine. Donaldson was fresh from covering the White House for ABC News. The first episode included live studio audience. As Donaldson put it, the audience participation “was not [like] Oprah or Donahue… They are terrific shows, but that’s not us.” Fox News’ Chris Wallace and the late Judd Rose were correspondents.

Early staffers in attendance last night included Disney ABC TV Group president Ben Sherwood, who was an associate producer on the show; correspondent Jay Schadler; producers Betsy West, now with the Columbia Journalism School, Neal Shapiro, now with WNET, Mark Lukasiewicz, now with NBC, David Doss, now with Al Jazeera America; also Ira Rosen and Rick Kaplan, plus Jeanmarie Condon and Marc Burstein, who now have executive roles at ABC News.

Insiders tell us Sawyer delivered a toast to the team, for their passion and hard work, while Burstein read a note from Donaldson sending regrets and sharing how proud he was of the work he did at “Primetime (as he used to say) LIVE!”

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NBC News Shakes Up Management Team, New EP at ‘Rock Center’

NBC News has shaken up its leadership team, promoting DC bureau chief Antoine Sanfuentes (left) to senior VP of NBC News, promoting David Verdi to senior VP of newsgathering, upping Ken Strickland to DC bureau chief and naming Alex Wallace (center) EP of “Rock Center.” For Wallace, it’s a return to overseeing a Brian Williams broadcast. Wallace was EP of “Nightly News” in 2007-2008.

Rome Hartman, (right) the former longtime CBS News producer who launched “Rock Center” as EP, will be shifting to the specials unit with a focus on election coverage.

Announcing the changes, NBC News president Steve Capus highlighted that the new executive ranks all came from inside NBC.

As you read the list of promotions and changes spelled out in this note, please keep in mind I’ve decided to stay inside our talent-rich organization for each of these moves – a real testament to the contributions of these individuals and the bench strength of NBC News.

Sanfuentes, who joined NBC News as a desk assistant in 1990, rose through the producer and executive ranks and was named DC bureau chief in January 2011. In his new role he will be Capus’ chief deputy at NBC News in New York. Wallace, who had been Capus #2, will remain a senior VP and will add oversight of “Rock Center” as well as “Ann Curry’s production unit and our health initiative.”

Verdi, a longtime NBC Newser, who had been VP of newsgathering, is now a senior VP, adding oversight of news affiliate partnerships and the NBC News Channel.

Joining Strickland in DC will be Meaghan Rady, once a producer for Tom Brokaw, who rose through the ranks and will now be deputy bureau chief.

“I’m grateful to Rome for his leadership, signified by Rock Center’s first Emmy last week for Bob Costas’ breakthrough interview with Jerry Sandusky,” Capus writes in his note, which you can read in full after the jump.

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Behind The Scenes In Tampa

With the Republican National Convention finally getting underway in Tampa, there are some great behind the scenes pieces being put out by the TV new organizations covering the event.

Here, CBS News veterans Bob Schieffer and Bill Plante–with 91 years of political coverage between them–talk about RNCs past:

“Fox and Friends” went behind the scenes with Sean Hannity this morning:


We will add more interesting behind the scenes videos as we find them.

Update: NBC’s senior VP of news and specials Mark Lukasiewicz gives a tour of NBC’s RNC setup, below.

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Bob Epstein Moves off ‘Nightly News,’ Named VP of NBC Specials; Pat Burkey to be named EP of ‘Nightly’

Bob Epstein, who has been executive producer of “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” for the last two-and-a-half years is moving to the NBC News specials unit as VP.

TVNewser has learned longtime NBC News producer Pat Burkey will be named EP of the show. An announcement could come as early as tomorrow.

Epstein, a former EP in the early days of MSNBC and later EP of Weekend “Nightly News” joins Mark Lukasiewicz, who has been promoted to Senior Vice President of NBC News specials.

Burkey is also a longtime NBC News employee, having been a senior producer on Williams’s MSNBC show “The News with Brian Williams.”

Currently, Burkey has oversight of Weekend “Today” and Weekend “Nightly News.”

Epstein leaves “Nightly” as he inherited it, as the #1 evening newscast.

> More: Internal email from Epstein to his staff, after the jump…

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Vivian Schiller Joins NBC News as Chief Digital Officer

Former NPR president and CEO Vivian Schiller is joining NBC News as Chief Digital Officer, reporting to NBC News president Steve Capus.

In the new position, Schiller will oversee the network’s digital extensions on the web and in mobile, for both MSNBC and NBC News. She’ll also provide direction to the network’s emerging properties EducationNation.com and theGrio.com.

“With Vivian’s help, NBC News will be recognized as the premier broadcast news organization in America, as well as the most innovative, comprehensive and trusted news operation,” said Capus in a news release.

In a note to staff, obtained by TVNewser, Capus writes, “This addition to the team will free up some time for Mark Lukasiewicz as he continues to excel in the planning and execution of NBC News specials, political debates, election coverage and big events.”

Schiller resigned from NPR in March following the release of an undercover video of NPR’s fund-raising head referring to the Tea Party “racist” and “scary.”

Before NPR, Schiller was Senior Vice President and General Manager of NYTimes.com and before that was Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Discovery Times Channel.

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NBC News VP Mark Lukasiewicz Touts The Royal Wedding by NBC News App

NBC News vice president of specials and digital media Mark Lukasiewicz touted the network’s The Royal Wedding by NBC News app, as well as Twitter account @RoyalWedding, in an internal email.

The app is available for the iPad, iPhone, and Android.

Lukasiewicz also mentioned a tie-in with entertainment-based social network GetGlue, as well as a special Facebook event. From his email:

In addition to the comprehensive coverage on NBC News, MSNBC, and our sister networks like E! Entertainment Television and Telemundo, we are expanding the Royal Wedding experience through our app, which we built to be the ideal companion to watching the event on TV. Combining all of our editorial research and news reports (both archive and new) with photos and social media, this app is the perfect tool for all things Royal Wedding. The app even lets you plan a viewing party with your friends and features daily updates. So far, the app has seen more than 110,000 downloads on iPad, iPhone, and Android, and we invite you to check it out!

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Mark Lukasiewicz to Head up NBC News Specials & Digital

Mark Lukasiewicz has been named Vice President of NBC News Specials and Digital Media. For the last several years, Lukasiewicz has headed up NBC News’ digital efforts and now takes on the additional responsibility of overseeing Specials across all the NBC News platforms. Lukasiewicz was the EP of the recent “Inside the Obama White House” special on NBC.

Lukasiewicz joined NBC News as Executive Producer in October, 2000. Prior to NBC, he was a producer at ABC News for shows including “Prime Time Live,” and “World News Tonight with Peter Jennings,” and he was EP of “Good Morning America.”

The NBC News Specials unit was previously run by Phil Alongi who left NBC earlier this year.

After the jump, a TVNewser interview with Lukasiewicz at this year’s CES…

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From Old Media to New, NBC News’ Digital Guru Keeps A Foot in Both

webnewserCES_12.30.jpgNBC News’s VP of digital media Mark Lukasiewicz is an old media executive who’s made the leap to new media. We wanted to know how he did it.

We caught up with “Luk” this afternoon in NBC’s massive CES booth, just after Nancy O’Dell had taped inserts for tonight’s Access Hollywood, and while Maria Bartiromo anchored Closing Bell on CNBC, and as a Universal Pictures movie trailer played in a giant LCD monitor, and attendees experimented with the Microsoft Surface and bloggers filled a lounge set up just for them. It’s that big.

We asked Lukasiewicz about making the move to digital and why NBCU stays committed to a presence at CES despite cutbacks at the company.

CES Day One: Stringer, Yang, Couric…

webnewserCES_12.30.jpg• Sony CEO Sir Howard Stringer talks about his “alma mater CBS News” during the opening keynote. With a surprise visit from the star of an upcoming Sony Pictures release…

Look who we spotted in the NBC Universal booth…

Katie Couric goes from the CBS Evening News, to YouTube, back to the TV as Samsung unveils Internet@TV

Today @ CES: We’re heading to interview FBN’s Connell McShane and NBC News VP of Digital Media Mark Lukasiewicz and who knows who else we’ll run into on the show floor.

Check out WebNewser for new posts and follow us on Twitter too…