Scripps names TV station operations VP; new manager for West Palm Beach station
Wed, January 07, 2004 by Mark Kroeger
CINCINNATI – Bill Peterson, a veteran broadcast television executive with 30 years of news and station management experience, has been named vice president of station operations for The E. W. Scripps Company’s broadcast television station group, effective immediately.Peterson will have strategic and operating oversight responsibilities for the 10 Scripps television stations. He succeeds John Lansing, who had filled that role for Scripps since 2000. Lansing has been named executive vice president of the company’s Scripps Networks operating division.Peterson, 60, is joining the Scripps corporate management team after serving two years as vice president and general manager of WPTV-TV, the company’s NBC affiliated television station in West Palm Beach, Fla. “Bill Peterson is an energetic and creative broadcast television executive who has succeeded in turning our already good West Palm television station into a juggernaut,” said Kenneth W. Lowe, president and chief executive officer for Scripps. “We’re adding him to our corporate management team in Cincinnati so that he can apply those same skills across our entire station group.”Assuming responsibility from Peterson for WPTV’s daily operations will be Brian Lawlor, who currently is general sales manager for WCPO-TV, the Scripps television station in Cincinnati. Lawlor, 37, will become station manager for WPTV effective immediately.Lawlor is a 1988 graduate of King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., with a bachelor’s degree in marketing. He also has a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Miami.Lawlor began his broadcast industry career as an account executive at WBRE-TV in Wilkes-Barre before holding similar positions at WPTV and WTVJ-TV in Miami. He returned to WPTV in 1995 as the national sales manager and three years later was named local sales manager. Lawlor is a member of the ABC Sales Advisory Board and is the sales liaison to the ABC Marketing Board. He is a member of the Presidents Council at the University of Miami. Peterson joined Scripps in 2001 after serving two years as vice president and general manager of WRAL-TV, the CBS network affiliate in Raleigh N.C. From 1989 to 1999 he served as president and general manager of WPEC-TV, the CBS network affiliate in West Palm Beach. He also served as president of WPEC’s parent company, Photo Electronics Corp., from 1990 until the company was sold to Freedom Communications in 1996. He then served as vice president, broadcasting for Freedom until 1999. Before joining WPEC, he served three years as president and general manager of WTKR-TV in Norfolk, Va.Peterson’s career in broadcast television began in 1964 as a news photographer at WSPD-TV (now WTVG-TV) in Toledo, Ohio. In 1973 he was named news director at WSPD and then went on to serve in the same capacity for television stations in Cleveland, San Diego, Miami and Los Angeles.Peterson has a bachelor’s degree in electrical and electronic engineering from the University of Toledo. He and his wife Kathleen have two grown children.Celebrating its 125th anniversary, The E.W. Scripps Company is a diverse media concern with interests in newspaper publishing, broadcast television, national television networks, interactive media and television-retailing. Scripps operates 21 daily newspapers, 10 broadcast TV stations, four cable and satellite television programming services and a home shopping network. All of the company’s media businesses provide content and advertising services via the Internet.Scripps Networks brands include Home & Garden Television, Food Network, DIY -- Do It Yourself Network and Fine Living. HGTV reaches about 84 million U.S. television households and Food Network can be seen in about 83 million households. Scripps Networks Web sites include FoodNetwork.com, HGTV.com, DIYnetwork.com and fineliving.com. Scripps Networks programming can be seen in 33 countries. The company’s home shopping subsidiary, Shop At Home Network, markets a growing range of consumer goods directly to television viewers and visitors to the Shop At Home Web site, shopathometv.com. Shop At Home reaches about 45 million full-time equivalent U.S. households.Scripps also operates Scripps Howard News Service and United Media, which is the worldwide licensing and syndication home of PEANUTS and DILBERT.