Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Bill Shine Is OUT At Fox News

Bill Shine
Fox News announced on Monday the exit of one of its co-presidents, Bill Shine, removing a holdover from the Roger Ailes era and signaling that the network is prepared to shake up its executive ranks as it tries to move past a season of turmoil that has engulfed it since last summer.

According to The NYTimes Shine is a veteran newsman and a longtime lieutenant to Mr. Ailes, the former chairman who was forced out amid a sexual harassment scandal in July. Although Mr. Shine was seen as a source of stability in the news division at a turbulent time, his presence was viewed by some employees as a sign that Fox News’s parent, 21st Century Fox, was not serious about its stated commitment to overhaul the culture of the network.

Shine had been cited in several lawsuits as someone who enabled and concealed Mr. Ailes’s behavior and dismissed concerns from women who complained about it. He has denied all wrongdoing.

His departure is sure to roil some of Fox News’s most recognizable stars, with whom Mr. Shine had close relationships. Sean Hannity, the channel’s 10 p.m. mainstay, is particularly close with Mr. Shine, and he publicly defended his friend last week on Twitter, saying that removing Mr. Shine would be “the total end of the FNC as we know it. Done.”

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Rupert Murdoch made the announcement Monday via a brief email to Fox News staffers.

"Sadly, Bill Shine resigned today," wrote Murdoch. "I know Bill was respected and liked by everybody at Fox News. We will all miss him."

Suzanne Scott
Suzanne Scott becomes president of programming and Jay Wallace has been promoted to president of news. Scott had been Shine's second-in-command in programming and has been with the network since it began in 1996.

Additionally, Brian Jones, EVP of Fox Business Network, becomes president of the network reporting to Scott and Wallace.

The Murdochs had recently quietly put out external feelers for a new head of Fox News and were known to be looking for a woman, which would send a clear message given the cloud of sexism the network has been under since last summer when Gretchen Carlson's lawsuit opened the floodgates of similar accusations against Roger Ailes as well as network star Bill O'Reilly.

In a media release announcing the executive shuffle, Murdoch also said: "This is a significant day for all at FOX News. Bill has played a huge role in building FOX News to its present position as the nation's biggest and most important cable channel in the history of the industry. His contribution to our channel and our country will resonate for many years.”

Shine has been accused of covering up incidents of sexual harassment of Ailes, his former boss, who was ousted from the network last summer after Carlson's lawsuit against him.

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