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NBC’s booming reality house has promoted two staffers and added another.
The network announced Monday that Jenny Groom will now oversee Paul Telegdy’s busy alternative department, continuing to serve as senior vp programming and development. Under her are Shelby Shaftel, upped from director to vp, and publicity import Lesley Cerwin. The longtime NBC communications executive, point on the alternative department for eight years, has moved over to programming — where she will now serve as senior vp current.
“Jenny Groom has emerged as the natural leader for the NBC alternative programming team,” said Telegdy, NBC Entertainment’s alternative and reality group president. “Her creativity and understanding of NBC’s audience have been honed over a 14-year career, starting as a page. … She has been a huge part of the success we have enjoyed at NBC, having headed up development for nearly five years, and now adds the management of the wider department to her duties.”
Groom will continue to report directly to Telegdy, overseeing the department, its existing slate and upcoming projects such as Jennifer Lopez vehicle World of Dance, Ellen DeGeneres-hosted Game of Games and upcoming spinoff Little Big Shots: Forever Young.
All three promotions mark further steps in the continued evolution of the department following the 2016 forming of the Universal Television Alternative Studio, run by former department head and Telegdy lieutenant Meredith Ahr. The restructuring has made both a buyer and a seller out of Telegdy, whose robust reality roster includes reigning ratings hit The Voice, as well as standbys America’s Got Talent and American Ninja Warrior and younger breakouts Little Big Shots and The Wall.
“Lesley Cerwin joins us after eight years leading the alternative communications team. [She] has been a trusted and integral part of our success on both the network side and in launching our new studio,” Telegdy continued. “Lesley, who combines her vast experience and passion for alternative programming with strategic expertise, will take responsibility for maximizing the franchise value of our current portfolio. Shelby Shaftel has been integral to the success of The Voice since day one. We look forward to Shelby applying the best practices of that massive hit to our wider development and portfolio.”
Cerwin’s new gig sees her having oversight of all current alternative properties, many of which she helped launch on the PR side. She’ll be running point on coordinated intra-NBC efforts in marketing, sales, digital, social and publicity to keep those existing series healthy.
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