Scripps newspaper division names director of advertising

Thu, April 06, 2006 by Mark Kroeger

CINCINNATI – Deborah Smiddy, an experienced newspaper executive with an extensive background in advertising sales and business development, has been named director of advertising for The E. W. Scripps Company’s newspaper division, effective the first week of June.   In her new role, Smiddy will provide guidance and assistance to retail, classified and national sales staffs at Scripps newspapers. She also will identify national sales opportunities and serve as a training resource for advertising sales employees throughout the division.   Smiddy, 54, who has served as president and publisher of the Scripps-owned Redding (Calif.) Record Searchlight since 1999, will report to Mark Contreras, senior vice president of newspapers for Scripps.   “Given that advertising share growth is one of our most important priorities, we’re fortunate to have someone with Deb Smiddy’s sales background and outstanding credentials in this new role,” Contreras said. “During her tenure in Redding, the Record Searchlight has been one of the company’s top performing newspapers. Her persistence and skill in developing new business and growing advertising share has been evident in the newspaper’s consistently solid financial performance.”   Smiddy was named president and publisher in Redding after serving four years as advertising director for the Knoxville News Sentinel, which also is a Scripps newspaper.   A Knoxville native, she worked at the News Sentinel for 26 years, starting as a keypunch operator in the data processing department. She developed an interest in sales after moving to the News Sentinel’s advertising department as a secretary. She landed an advertising sales position and later became a sales supervisor. From 1990 to 1994, she was the News Sentinel’s classified advertising manager.   As director of advertising for Scripps, Smiddy will be returning to Knoxville and working out of the newspaper division’s interactive media group offices.   Smiddy has a bachelor’s degree in human resource development from the University of Tennessee and is nearing completion of a master’s degree in organizational leadership from National University in Redding.   About Scripps   The E.W. Scripps Company is a diverse and growing media enterprise with interests in national cable networks, newspaper publishing, broadcast television stations, electronic commerce, interactive media, and licensing and syndication.   The company’s portfolio of media properties includes: Scripps Networks, with such brands as HGTV, Food Network, DIY Network, Fine Living, Great American Country and HGTVPro; daily and community newspapers in 18 markets and the Washington-based Scripps Media Center, home to the Scripps Howard News Service; 10 broadcast TV stations, including six ABC-affiliated stations, three NBC affiliates and one independent; leading online search and comparison shopping services, Shopzilla and uSwitch; United Media, a leading worldwide licensing and syndication company that is the home of PEANUTS, DILBERT and approximately 150 other features and comics; and Shop At Home, which markets a growing range of consumer goods directly to television viewers in roughly 57 million U.S. households and online through shopathometv.com.

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