Oprah net hires Regency TV president


Regency Television president Robin Schwartz has been named to the same post at OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network, a joint venture with Discovery Communications.

Stephanie Levine will now run day-to-day operations at Regency.

In other OWN news, the network's staff and operations will be based in Los Angeles. OWN (currently Discovery Health Channel) will debut in second-half 2009; the venture also includes Oprah.com.

Schwartz, whose appointment is effective July 14, will report to OWN's CEO, who has not been chosen. Among the names that have been bandied about as potential candidates include former Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia exec Susan Lyne, CW's Dawn Ostroff and MTV Networks' Judy McGrath. OWN chairman Winfrey and Discovery also will name a head of Oprah.com.

For her part, Schwartz said she liked the idea of a network that "celebrates the best in people" and is planning to develop programming in all genres, including reality, scripted, magazine and talk.

Schwartz has been at Regency since 2004. She oversaw the production of "Malcolm in the Middle" and recently produced several series for Fox, including the short-lived "New Amsterdam."(partialdiff)