Lifetime's Head of Development JoAnn Alfano Exits

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JoAnn Alfano

The announcement comes more than a year after A&E Television Networks acquired the female-centric cable network.

JoAnn Alfano, head of development at Lifetime since 2008, is leaving the network.

The announcement comes more than a year after A&E Television Networks acquired the top-rated women-targeted cable network and several months after History chief Nancy Dubuc added Lifetime to her portfolio with a mandate to reinvigorate the once-dominant network in the face of growing competition from cable networks like Bravo, Oxygen, WE and OWN.

In the interim, Dubuc will oversee the network’s development. Nina Lederman, svp series programming and Tina Lopez, svp original movies will report to her.

"Post merger of Lifetime and AETN, I decided a few months ago that I would leave Lifetime,” said Alfano in a statement. “I wanted to stay on through the first year to help shepherd some great projects through the development process. Now that those projects are into production and underway, I feel it is the right time for me to move on. While I am saddened to leave my incredibly talented team, I am extremely proud of the work we created together. I will continue rooting for them and everyone at Lifetime for years to come.”

Alfano developed scripted cop dramas Against the Wall and Exit 19, which will bow later this year on Lifetime. Dubuc ordered 13 episodes of both shows.

“JoAnn Alfano has been a great asset to Lifetime over the last few years,” Dubuc added. “I am grateful she stayed on to help us during the first year. I along with the entire Lifetime team will miss her insights and leadership.”

With Dawn Ostroff on her way out at the CW, Alfano’s news will inevitably set off rumors that she’s headed to the younger-skewing network.