Published on Tuesday, 08 May 2012 15:40
Emily Barr, WLS-TV's President/General Manager since 1997, will be exiting the station next month and has accepted a position with Post-Newsweek Stations to become its President and CEO. She starts with the company in July and will slowly ease into her new role.
Barr will be replacing Alan Frank, Post-Newsweek Stations' current President/CEO, who announced he will be retiring by the end of this year, after over 30 years with the company.
In a statement this afternoon, Donald E. Graham, Chairman and CEO of the Washington Post Company, said: "We are so fortunate to have Emily Barr join us. She's been an outstanding manager in one of the greatest companies in the industry and a force for innovation everywhere she's been."
For the last 15 years, Emily Barr has been the President/General Manager of Chicago's ABC7. Under her supervision, the station has been far and away #1 in local programming ratings and #1 in revenue. In the most recently released totals for local television stations' billings & revenues (exclusively revealed HERE
), WLS-TV's 2011 totals were nearly $53 million higher than its nearest competition. There is no bigger success story in local television than that of WLS-TV over the the last 20 years, with most of time period having Emily Barr leading the station.
Barr also created the ABC-TV digital sub-channel Live Well Network in 2007 and has managed it nationally since its launch in 2009. It is now seen in over 60% of the country.
Barr has received numerous awards, including Business Professional of the Year from the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce and the Spirit Award from the Chicago Urban League. She serves as President of the board of United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Chicago and Vice Chairperson of the State Street Commission. She is a member of the board of Children's Memorial Hospital Foundation, Greater Chicago Food Depository, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, and Chicago Central Area Committee. She is also a member of the advisory council of DePaul University's College of Communications, the Economic Club of Chicago, and the Chicago Network. Barr has served several past terms as Chairman of the board of the Illinois Broadcasters Association (IBA) and is a current Vice Chairman/TV for the IBA.
Just prior to coming to Chicago, Emily Barr was President and General Manager of WTVD-TV in Raleigh, NC from 1994-1997. Before that, she had been the Assistant General Manager and Director of Broadcast Operations & Programming at Baltimore's WMAR-TV. She has worked in television news Houston, Washington, D.C., and started out as a news editor in Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN.
She was born in Haverhill, MA. Barr received a B.A. degree in Film Studies from Carleton College in Northfield, MN and earned an M.B.A. from George Washington University in Washington, D.C.
Emily Barr is married and has two teenage daughters.
She will now look to be relocating from her Chicago Hyde Park neighborhood house to one in Michigan
. (See update below.)
Post-Newsweek Stations is the the broadcasting division of the Washington Post Company -- a self-contained corporation within that company. The company is not headquartered in Washington, D.C., but rather in Detroit, MI. Post-Newsweek Stations shares its headquarters its station in that market, WDIV-TV, Detroit's NBC affiliate.
UPDATE: Despite having the Post-Newsweek broadcasting headquarters in Detroit, MI, Emily Barr will be keeping her residence in Chicago. She will travel back and forth to Detroit, as well as to stations in the other markets operated by the broadcast company, but will be working largely remotely from her Chicago home.