Channing Dungey is exiting her role as ABC’s entertainment president.
She is the first black person in history to be the president at a major broadcast network in America.
Her exit comes right as new executives from Fox are coming to the network after the 20th Century Fox acquisition. Because Dungey would have been reporting to Fox’s Walden, who would now be Disney TV Studios head, her exit had been rumored for some time now as many thought she would head somewhere else.
“I’m grateful to Channing for her significant contributions and unwavering dedication to the success of ABC over the past 14 years. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed having the opportunity to work with and mentor Channing; her curiosity, passion and creativity will ensure she is successful in whatever path she chooses going forward. Over the past four years at Freeform, and throughout her career, Karey has proven herself a gifted leader with a strong track record of developing unique programming. Karey’s attention to, and intimate knowledge of, the audience, and a commitment to quality will be a great addition to the creative team at ABC,” said Walt Disney Co. CEO Bob Iger said in a statement.
Dungey said: “I’m incredibly proud of what the team and I have accomplished over the years, and all the meaningful and impactful programming we’ve developed. This job has been the highlight of my career. While I’ve loved every moment, and knew I could call ABC home for many years to come, I’m excited to tackle new challenges. The toughest thing about this choice is leaving all the immensely talented people I’ve grown to admire and care for, from Bob Iger, the best leader and mentor that anyone could have; to my peers and colleagues; to my talented team, who I will miss enormously. But knowing that Karey is taking over, a person that I like and respect so deeply, makes passing the baton a lot easier. I know that, together, under Peter and Dana’s leadership, they are going to achieve great things and I will be rooting for their success.”
She’s been at the network since 2004. She was once head of the drama department where she oversaw the rise of Shonda Rhimes and Shondaland properties. She took over the lead of ABC Entertainment as a whole in 2016. The past few months have been rocky, with the Roseanne snafu and losing Kenya Barris to Netflix.
Dungey will be replaced by Freeform’s Head of Originals, Karey Burke.