Speciale Named President, Turner Broadcasting Ad Sales

Longtime Turner senior advertising executive Greg D’Alba is departing as head of advertising sales for CNN with Turner Entertainment advertising chief, Donna Speciale, taking over and expanding her responsibilities.

D’Alba, a nearly 30-year veteran, was president of CNN News Networks and Turner Digital Ad Sales. D’Alba had been the senior advertising executive for CNN since 2003 and with his current title since 2012.
 
A Turner memo from David Levy, president, Turner Broadcasting, did not go into many details about D’Alba's departure. But reports said the change comes after a bumpy stretch for CNN, which has been revamping its programming and operations under Jeff Zucker, president of CNN Worldwide.

Speciale, who has been president of Turner Entertainment & Young Adult Ad Sales for two years, now becomes president of Turner Broadcasting Advertising Sales. She will be adding digital media and CNN to her entertainment, kids and young adult sales activities.

"Obviously, the changes we are announcing today come at an important time in our business," said Turner’s Levy. "Through discussions with our clients, we know they're looking to accelerate the process of integrating their media plans and have a single point of focus that will further streamline the buying process across all screens and opportunities."

He added: “As agencies and clients begin planning for their 2014-15 upfront, it was imperative to implement our new structure to meet the needs of our advertising partners.”

CNN’s total day average viewership were at 415,000 viewers, even with the results of 2012. In prime time, CNN was down 16% to 574,000 average viewers. Sister news network HLN was up 23% to 298,000 total day viewers for 2013 versus the previous year, with prime-time viewers up 18% to 399,000 viewers.

In addition to the senior CNN advertising sales staff now reporting to Speciale, a number of sports TV digital advertising executives will also have new reports.

Rich Calacci, senior vice president and sports digital/Bleacher Report ad sales and Seth Ladetsky, senior vice president, sports digital ad sales, will now report directly to Jon Diament, executive vice president of Turner Sports Ad Sales. Diament continues to report directly to Lenny Daniels, executive vice president and COO of Turner Sports.

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