CEO, ITV plc
Adam Crozier's impressive CV has seen him head up a number of important organisations, the most recent of which is ITV plc. Upon joining ITV, Crozier took control of an organisation that was heavily in debt, but during his five years in charge he has turned the fortunes of Britain's largest commercial terrestrial television network around. Prior to ITV, Crozier was no stranger to the challenge of implementing change at large organisations: he became chief executive of the FA at just 35, and undertook the 'biggest corporate turnaround programme in the UK' when he was appointed to lead Royal Mail – and a controversial modernisation programme – in 2003.
Since appearing on our screens as PJ and Duncan in the BBC's Byker Grove, Ant and Dec have gone on to rule the nation's television presenting world, earning countless awards in recognition of their work along the way. The duo host some of the country's most watched programmes including SMTV Live, I'm A Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!, Britain's Got Talent and Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway. A shortlived music career was fortunately limited to top ten hit Let's Get Ready to Rhumble, but Ant and Dec's cheeky banter and personable presenting styles have come to define Saturday night television.
Founder and Executive President, Global
Often touted as the most powerful man in British commercial radio, 37-year-old Ashley Tabor is head of Global Radio, the UK's largest commercial radio group. Having left school at 16, Tabor formed Global Radio in 2007 and has expanded it to become the powerhouse it is today by acquiring a number of the country's favourite radio stations. Today, around 24 million listeners tune in to a Global Radio's stations every week. Tabor's success in radio led him to expand into other areas of media and create the umbrella Global Group which is also involved in television broadcasting, live promoting and artist management. 2015 saw Tabor make his first move into the world of music festivals through his acquisition of Broadwick Live.
Controller, BBC 1
Charlotte Moore is one of the most powerful people in UK broadcasting, overseeing a budget superior to any other controller of a British television channel. BBC 1 remains the most viewed channel on British television, watched by over 40 million viewers on average each week. 2015 saw 23 of the top 40 television programmes viewed in Britain coming from BBC 1, with The Great British Bake Off final topping the pile. Moore's distinguished career in broadcasting began in 2002 when, following her graduation from the University of Bristol, she joined Ideal World as a producer-director of documentaries.
Television Presenter and Producer
Chris Evans's career has enjoyed a renaissance in recent years since he was appointed to replace Terry Wogan as the presenter of BBC Radio 2's Breakfast Show in 2010. Having dominated television and radio throughout the '90s and early 2000s as the outspoken host of The Big Breakfast and TFI Friday, today Evans is a blue-chip broadcasting brand. Following the widely documented departure of the Top Gear presenting team last year, he was rapidly signed up to front a new-look Top Gear – testament to his presenting credentials as well as his passion for all things car-related.
Chief Executive, Channel Four Television Corporation
David Abraham has been chief executive of Channel 4 since 2010, joining from UKTV, where he was credited with the hugely successful rebranding of channels such as Dave, Yesterday and Alibi. He now faces the prospect of the privatisation of the state-owned broadcaster, which makes around £900 million in total revenues. Abraham has expressed concern over the possibility, which he fears would mean shows being made in-house to the detriment of independent production companies. He attended a state school and gained a place to study Modern History at Magdalen College, Oxford. Upon graduating, he initially embarked on a career in commerce as opposed to television, co-founding St Luke's advertising agency during the '90s.
Comedian and Television Presenter
BBC1's Friday night 10.30 slot is one of the most coveted going, and, for the last five years, it has belonged to Irish comedian Graham Norton. Moving to the UK to pursue a career in comedy, Norton took his drag act to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival before embarking on a broadcasting career with regular appearances on Radio 4's Loose Ends. Best known today as a chat show host, Norton moved from BBC Radio to Channel 4 where he was given his own shows, V Graham Norton and So Graham Norton. Now back with the BBC, The Graham Norton Show resembles a conveyor belt of the world's biggest celebrity names and has earned Norton two more BAFTAs to add to his collection.
Chief Creative Officer, Channel 4
Jay Hunt took up the role of chief creative officer for Channel 4 in 2011 and has brought a multitude of popular shows to the channel, including Utopia, The Undateables and Gogglebox. She has also acquired hit TV shows from abroad, including Homeland, Fargo and The Returned. Born in Australia, Hunt lived in Pennsylvania and Scotland before she moved to London. She read English at Cambridge before embarking on her television career, and worked at the BBC for 20 years. Under Hunt's leadership, Channel 4 was named Channel of the Year at the Edinburgh International Television Festival in 2014, and she has been named as one of the UK's 100 most powerful women by BBC Radio 4.
CEO, Sky
No longer regarded as the luxury commodity it was in the '90s, Sky, the UK's largest digital subscription television company, now reaches more households than ever. As CEO for almost a decade, Jeremy Darroch has spearheaded this drive towards greater accessibility and overseen Sky's transformation from solely a television provider into the most comprehensive multi-platform home communications service in the UK and Ireland. Sky now offers phone lines and broadband as well as TV, and serves 21 million customers across five countries. Appointed CEO in 2007 following three years as CFO, Darroch joined with considerable experience in retail and consumer goods, having worked for DSG and Procter & Gamble.
Managing Director, ITV Studios
Kevin Lygo is the man chosen to succeed Peter Fincham as director of television at ITV when he steps down next month. Lygo, described as a relaxed personality who is popular with programme makers, began his career in television as a BBC scriptwriter for The Two Ronnies. He subsequently became head of entertainment at Channel 4 where he commissioned shows such as Spaced, Smack the Pony and Trigger Happy TV. Returning to C4 as director of television after a period at Channel 5, he notably commissioned the first series of Big Brother. At ITV Studios Lygo has seen a growth in revenues from around £600 million to over a billion.
Director-General, BBC
Tony Hall joined the BBC in 1973 as a news trainee after graduating from Oxford with an MA in PPE. He worked his way through senior management positions, leaving in 2001 to become chief executive at the Royal Opera House for over a decade. Hall returned to the BBC as director-general in 2013, 40 years after the public service broadcaster gave him his first job. 2016 sees the BBC face its biggest challenge in recent years with its royal charter due to expire at the end of the year, and Hall's move to open up television and radio hours to independent producers looks to pre-empt possible threats to the corporation's future.
Acting Director of Television, BBC
Mark Linsey became acting director of BBC television at the start of November last year following the departure of Danny Cohen. Linsey joined the BBC in 2007 as executive director for entertainment and was appointed controller of entertainment commissioning at the end of 2008. In this role he commissioned a number of the nation's best-loved shows including Strictly Come Dancing, The Apprentice and Top Gear. Linsey studied for a performing arts degree at Leicester Polytechnic, nowadays known as De Montfort University. Prior to the BBC he had worked at Talent Television, Zeal TV and Tiger Aspect.
Founder and Creative Director, Love Productions
Richard McKerrow has devised and produced a number of the UK's critically acclaimed and best loved television series including Famous Rich and Homeless and Benefits Street, as well as perennial favourite The Great British Bake Off. In 2015, the Bake Off final received the largest television audience of the year, and a number of Love Production's formats have also been successfully adapted for overseas audiences. Starting out as a print journalist, McKerrow entered the world of television as a producer-director for documentaries at Yorkshire Television before moving to Channel 4. He was also creative director at Maverick Television for two years before he set up Love Productions in 2004.
Chief Executive, Ofcom
In the short time since she took up her post as chief executive at OfCom in March 2015, Sharon White has more than delivered on her impressive reputation. Lauded as a breath of fresh air at the regulator, White's plans for improvements signal her determination to make the broadcasting and telecommunications industries fairer for consumers: one of her first changes was to enable customers to walk away from broadband contracts if their connection speed falls below acceptable levels. White studied at Cambridge and gained a Master's in Economics from UCL. In 1989 she joined the Civil Service and worked at the Treasury, latterly as director-general for public spending.
TV Producer and Founder, Syco Entertainment
Love him or loathe him, it is hard to argue with Simon Cowell's credentials. For a substantial proportion of the British population, a TV programme produced by Cowell has become a Saturday night staple. His two flagship projects, The X Factor and the Got Talent series, have enjoyed enormous success over the years, kicking off the careers of artists including Susan Boyle, Diversity, Little Mix and One Direction, who have also added to the roster of artists signed to Cowell's Syco music label. Starting out in the music industry as a post boy at EMI Music Publishing, Cowell was almost bankrupted by his first label, Fanfare Records. He is now one of the UK's most successful producers across both music and television.
Naturalist and Broadcaster
A stalwart of British broadcasting and a national treasure, Sir David Attenborough's dulcet tones have enhanced audiences' viewing experience since he started working full-time at the BBC over 60 years ago. Attenborough studied Natural Sciences, his true passion, at Cambridge, and joined the BBC as a trainee producer in 1952. He went on to senior management roles in the '60s and '70s before returning to broadcasting. With the unique ability to make natural history documentaries accessible and enjoyable for all, he has been the face of – and expert behind – immensely popular series including Planet Earth, The Blue Planet, Frozen Planet and the Life series. To date, he is the only person to have won BAFTAs for programmes in black and white, colour, HD and 3D.
Actor and Comedian, Co-founder of Comic Relief
Sir Lenny Henry's long career in the public eye working across radio, television and theatre has given him a prominent platform from which to highlight social injustice. He has done this to great effect through Comic Relief, which he founded with Richard Curtis, and in speaking out about the lack of diversity on British television, an imbalance he has described as 'appalling'. Having been awarded a knighthood in the Queen's birthday honours last year for his services to drama and charity, Henry has pledged to continue making British television the most diverse in the world. He was born in Dudley and his television career took off in the '70s on TV talent show New Faces, which he won with an impersonation of Stevie Wonder.
CEO, Endemol Shine Group
After leading the charge for entertainment television at Sky over a ten-year career, Sophie Turner Laing was brought in to head up the recently merged television production companies that now make up the Endemol Shine Group, which produces shows worldwide such as MasterChef, The Bridge, Humans, Deal or No Deal and Big Brother. Prior to her role at Endemol Shine Group, Turner Laing oversaw both Sky's partnership with HBO to form Sky Atlantic and Sky's commitment to increase investment in British programming production. In the early stages of her television career, Turner Laing worked at Henson International Television before holding a number of senior roles at the BBC. In 2013, she was made a Fellow of the Royal Television Society for her 'outstanding contribution' to British television.
Founder and Chief Executive, Studio Lambert
Since Stephen Lambert set up shop as an independent producer eight years ago, his company Studio Lambert has enjoyed remarkable success, now producing a host of Channel 4's most popular shows including Tattoo Fixers, the award-winning Undercover Boss and the phenomenon that is Gogglebox. Many of Lambert's productions have also proved highly popular exports, with formats being adapted for US TV. Prior to founding his own company, Lambert worked at the BBC for 16 years producing documentaries before becoming chief creative officer at RDF Media where he oversaw productions such as Faking It, Wife Swap and The Secret Millionaire.
CEO, BBC Worldwide and Director of Global
The chief executive of the BBC's commercial subsidiary, Tim Davie is in charge of selling BBC programming for broadcast abroad and responsible for developing the BBC's brand internationally. Having graduated from Cambridge, Davie joined Procter and Gamble as a trainee in their marketing department. Assuming marketing management roles at both Procter and Gamble and then PepsiCo, Davie joined the BBC as director of marketing, communications and audiences in 2005. Three years later, he was appointed to the role of director of audio and music in which he had responsibility for all the BBC's national radio networks and music output. Prior to taking up his current role in 2013, Davie served as acting director-general of the BBC following George Entwistle's resignation. During his time in this position he oversaw the investigations into BBC management and conduct.
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