Committed to Educating, Informing and Inspiring the Community, Louise Bryson Named Chairperson of the Board of Directors For Public Media Group of Southern California, The Parent Organization of PBS SoCal, KCET and Link TV
Anne Gates Announced as Vice Chair;
Bryson Succeeds Dick Cook Who Continues His Service on Board of Directors
LA, CALIF. – October 22, 2020 – The Public Media Group of Southern California, the parent organization of PBS SoCal, KCET and Link TV, today named Louise Bryson as Chairperson of the Board of Directors and Anne Gates as Vice Chair of the Board. The new leadership team is committed to serving the public good through the organization’s commitment to education, the arts, public affairs and social justice issues. Bryson will succeed 38-year Disney veteran Dick Cook, who is stepping down after seven years as Chair, but will remain on the Board.
Bryson brings to the position a 30+ year career in media, including President of Distribution for Lifetime Entertainment Services, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Lifetime Movie Networks as well as serving 12 years on the Board of Trustees of the J. Paul Getty Trust, four as Chair of the Board. Gates previously served as President of MGA Entertainment, the largest privately-held U.S. toy company, and as Executive Vice President and CFO of The Disney Company’s Consumer Products Division.
“We are excited to have this extraordinary leadership from two civic and entertainment business leaders. I look forward to collaborating with both Louise Bryson and Anne Gates as we advance our public media mission to provide an essential connection for Southern Californians to their community and the wider world,” said Andrew Russell, President and CEO of Public Media Group of Southern California. “As our new Board Chair, Louise Bryson is a widely respected leader whose depth of experience across philanthropic and creative organizations makes her ideally suited to help our stations navigate opportunities during this continually changing media landscape.”
“Public television has never been more important. I am proud of the role our local stations have played these past months with the challenges our communities have faced. PBS SoCal, KCET and Link TV have an opportunity to strengthen the fabric of Southern California and share distinctive perspectives with the rest of the country. I am deeply honored to build on the significant accomplishments of Dick Cook and Andrew Russell and to work with our engaged Board of Directors to continue to use the power of media for the public good,” said Louise Bryson.
Bryson started her career as a producer/writer for public television and has continued her interest in public media by serving as a Lifetime Trustee of Southern California Public Radio, a former Chair of the Board of KCET and was previously a member of the PBS National Board, which honored her with the 1998 Award for Excellence in Public Television Leadership. Previously, she was Senior Vice President at FX networks and a member of the NBC team that initiated the first Pay-Per-View Olympics as well as General Manager of Z Channel. She was elected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2010 and serves on the Academy’s Trust and Board. In 2010, Bryson was made Chair Emerita of the J. Paul Getty Trust and co-founded a council for the Getty Conservation Institute for which she continues to serve as Chair. She also serves on the boards of Huntington Memorial Hospital, California Community Foundation, CalArts and the Public Policy Institute of California. Bryson is a former Trustee of American Funds, WETA (the PBS station in D.C.), and Trustee Emerita of Pomona College. She received her MBA and MAT from Stanford University and a BA from University of Washington.
“PBS was founded on the belief that media can be a powerful force for education and inspiration, so I am committed to building upon our strong legacy of high-quality educational programming in order to meet the needs of our community.” commented Anne Gates. “Education is of particular importance to me, as public media continues to deliver such a value to Southern Californians and that includes early learners and their care-givers, especially those in low-income communities. We will continue to make sure they have access to learning resources that assist them as they prepare their entire families for success in school and in life.”
Gates has been in global consumer products businesses for over 35 years including the role of Managing Director for Disney Consumer Products Europe and Emerging Markets based in London. She also worked for Pepsi, in both the US and Europe, Bear Stearns (VP, Investment Banking), AT&T (Marketing) and Bell Labs (Research). She is currently on the Kroger Board, the Tapestry, Inc. Board and is a member of the Raymond James Financial Board. Gates also serves on the Boards of Cadre, the UC Berkeley Foundation and Salzburg Global Seminar. Gates has also been named to the Power List of Britain’s 100 most influential black people. She received her MS degree from the Engineering School at Columbia University and a BA degree in Applied Mathematics from UC Berkeley.
Russell continued, “I am very grateful for the leadership of our outgoing Board Chair Dick Cook, in particular for leading the company through major corporate milestones for the organization, including the recent KCET merger with PBS SoCal, KCET’s 50thAnniversary, the FCC Spectrum Auction and the KCET-Link TV merger. We all look forward to his ongoing commitment, insight and leadership as he continues his ten years of service on the Board.”
“As a beacon of outstanding creativity and a media organization uniquely committed to serving its audiences and educating its community, the Public Media Group of Southern California will benefit from this new leadership team and I look forward to working with this tremendous group of leaders that comprise our Board of Directors,” commented Dick Cook, who continues to serve as Chairman and CEO for Dick Cook Studios after serving as chairman of The Walt Disney Studios from 2000-2009.
Additional Board Officers of the Public Media Group of Southern California include: Mary Lyons as Secretary and David Zuercher as Treasurer. The full Board of Directors roster also includes: Gordon Bava, Margaret Black, JoAnn Bourne, Dr. Jo Ellen Chatham, Ina Coleman, Paul Gomez, Todd Hollander, Channing Johnson, Jenny Jones, Kelly Mazzo, Bill O’Hare, Susan Reardon, Michael Riley, Bob Romney, Dr. James Rosser, Cathy Schulman, Dennis Shapiro, Basit Sheikh, Charlie Steinmetz, Chris Thompson, Joseph Valdes, Dr. Ernest Wilson III and Val Zavala.
About the PUBLIC MEDIA GROUP OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
The Public Media Group of Southern California (PMGSC) tells stories that matter through original programs that reflect the diversity of our region and through the full schedule of trusted PBS programs. Our Southern California content channels PBS SoCal and KCET are available for free on internet-connected screens via the PBS Video App and seven local broadcast channels. Our Link TV channel is available nationally on DirecTV and Dish Network. A donor-supported community institution, PMGSC sparks the sharing of ideas at in-person cultural events and community conversations and delivers social impact through a variety of services including those that prepare our most vulnerable children for school.