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Rich Ross has been named president of the Discovery Channel, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The news broke within a few hours after announcing he'd leave his current post at Shine America. Ross, who will oversee creative and brand strategy, development, production, marketing and all day-to-day operations for the cable network, will be joining Discovery in its Los Angeles headquarters in January 2015.
"Rich is one of the most creative storytellers, ratings drivers, brand builders and TV executives in the industry today," said Discovery Communications CEO David Zaslav, to whom Ross will report. "On top of being just a great guy, Rich also is mission driven, with a commitment to quality, blue-chip programming and is a terrific fit with Discovery. I am confident that with his experience, relationships and creative leadership, Rich can lead Discovery to its next great chapter in innovative, groundbreaking television."
While the Chairman of the Walt Disney Studios, Ross was named No. 7 on Out's 2012 Power List (Apple CEO Tim Cook was at No. 1), but then he left the company after the poor box office results of several feature films. It seems his new position at the entertainment juggernaut will be a welcome next step for Ross, who said: "This network [Discovery] is the gold standard of programmers and to be able to add to its depth of great content with new stories and new characters is simply thrilling."