CNN Worldwide, a globally recognized leader in news and media has announced the appointment of Mark Thompson as its new Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Thompson’s extensive leadership experience and profound understanding of the media landscape make him an exceptional choice to lead CNN into its next chapter of growth and innovation.
He will be reporting to David Zaslav, the CEO of Warner Bros Discovery. Thompson’s responsibilities encompass overseeing CNN’s strategic direction, operations, and various business units across broadcast, streaming, and digital platforms. This includes managing CNN’s extensive global network portfolio, channels, programming, and its approximately 4,000 employees worldwide. Additionally, Thompson will assume the position of editor-in-chief, bearing ultimate responsibility for all content produced by CNN.
David Zaslav expressed his enthusiasm for Thompson’s appointment, highlighting his extensive experience, reputation, and capabilities within the news industry. Zaslav noted Thompson’s transformative leadership and fervent dedication to news, making him a powerful asset for both CNN and journalism during this critical period.
Thompson himself expressed his excitement about joining CNN after years of observing and even competing with the network. He recognized the growing need for accurate and reliable news worldwide, emphasizing the multitude of opportunities presented by the evolving media landscape. Thompson is eager to collaborate with his new colleagues and contribute to CNN’s successful future.
With over 40 years of experience in the news sector, Thompson is widely recognized for his prowess as a programmer, editorial leader, and innovative business figure. During his tenure as President and CEO of The New York Times from 2012 to 2020, he played a pivotal role in the newspaper’s digital transformation, significantly increasing digital subscriptions and revenues. His leadership also led to notable advancements in podcasting and lifestyle content. Thompson’s earlier role as the Director-General of the BBC from 2004 to 2012 involved overseeing extensive global digital news assets and numerous television and radio services. He was instrumental in pioneering the BBC iPlayer, the world’s first major broadcaster streaming service. His accomplishments span various significant events and developments in the news industry, from the global financial crisis to the London 2012 Olympics.
Thompson’s remarkable contributions to the media industry earned him a knighthood for his services to Media in the King’s Birthday Honours in June 2023.
While Thompson takes the helm at CNN, the interim leadership team, consisting of Amy Entelis, David Leavy, Virginia Moseley, and Eric Sherling, will continue to operate in their respective roles. They will report to Thompson as he assumes his new position.