David Lavin, Veteran Business Executive at CBS Television Studios, Dies at 57

David Lavin - Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of Lavin family

The "exceptional, passionate" exec worked at the company (and its predecessor, Paramount Pictures Television) since 2004.

David Lavin, senior vp business affairs at CBS Television Studios, died Wednesday of leukemia in Los Angeles, CBS announced. He was 57.

Known at CBS Television Studios for his deep knowledge of the business, his relationships in the industry and his commitment to mentoring junior execs, Lavin handled business affairs for scores of series over the years, including the NCIS franchise and Star Trek: Discovery.

For the past two years, he oversaw business affairs matters in connection with development and production for The CW and CBS All Access. With his background in computer science, the Los Angeles native was responsible for developing and implementing valuable systems for the studio.

"All of us here are devastated by David's passing; he was a core member of our business affairs team and such an important part of our CBS family," David Stapf, president of CBS Television Studios, said in a statement. "David was an exceptional, passionate executive who was entrusted with overseeing business matters for many of the studios' most important series and term deals. We have missed his presence over the past few months during his illness and are deeply saddened by this tragic loss."

"We have a big hole in our business affairs department today," added executive vp business affairs Dan Kupetz. "David was a valued colleague and genuine collaborator, a dear friend and a true teacher. He had terrific relationships throughout the company, an amazing depth of institutional knowledge and a complete understanding of our business. And, he did his work with genuine enthusiasm and loved to share his knowledge about our business with others."

Lavin worked at CBS Television Studios (and predecessor Paramount Pictures Television) since 2004. Before Paramount, Lavin worked for Viacom Productions for nearly 12 years, becoming senior vp and head of the business affairs department. 

He enjoyed teaching a course on TV deal-making through Carnegie Mellon University for many years. 

Survivors include his wife of 32 years, Karen; son Alex; and daughters Sami and Morgan.

In lieu of flowers, his family suggests donations in Lavin's name be made to the Leukemia Research Foundation.