Microsoft's Blair Westlake to join I-Academy

25-year industry veteran tapped as treasurer

Blair Westlake, corporate vp of Microsoft's Media and Entertainment Group, has been tapped as treasurer of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Westlake succeeds Michael Lynton, chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment, in the position.

The I-Academy is comprised of leading media and entertainment figures from 50 countries and 500 companies from all sectors of television, including Internet and mobile. The organization recognizes excellence in non-U.S.-produced TV programming with the International Emmy Award each November.

"Blair has one of the most extensive and enviable track records in our industry. From his days at Universal to his current position at Microsoft, he has been an outstanding and highly respected executive," said I-Academy president-CEO Bruce Paisner, who made the announcement Monday.

A 25-year industry veteran, Westlake serves as the liaison within Microsoft for media and entertainment companies. His group has brought thousands of hours of on-demand content to Microsoft customers through products like Xbox LIVE, Windows Media Center PCs and Zune.

Before joining Microsoft in 2004, Westlake was an executive at Universal Studios for nearly 20 years, where he was chairman of Universal Television and Networks Group. Westlake has served as corporate executive vice president of Gemstar-TV Guide and as a consultant to industry leaders including Comcast and NBC Universal.