Shortly after news broke that Mark Pedowitz is stepping down as Chairman and CEO of the CW, effective immediately, the veteran TV executives sent a memo to his staff about his departure.
“Together, we have accomplished so much,” Pedowitz wrote. “This upstart network with its unique blend of programming brought The CW into the forefront of pop culture and social media. We made water cooler TV in a multi-platform world. We embraced what the audience wanted and gave it to them.”
Pedowitz had been at the helm of the broadcast network for eleven and a half years — one of the longest tenures in network television — the last almost three as Chairman and CEO. His exit comes as Nexstar Media Group is taking over the CW, with its acquisition of 75% stake in the 16-year-old broadcast operation now completed. He will be replaced by Dennis Miller as President, confirming new owners’ intention to take the CW in a different direction.
Next, Pedowitz will be reviving his Pine Street Entertainment production company, which he was running when, in the spring of 2011, he was appointed President of the CW.
Here is his full email to staff, which refers to the CW’s “Dare to Defy” tagline:
Subject: A Note from Mark
Dear friends and colleagues,
All journeys have a beginning and end. My wonderful journey of 11 plus years at The CW is now concluding.
From the beginning of my time here at The CW all of you welcomed me with open arms. The camaraderie, teamwork, collaboration and creativity made this a truly special place to work.
Together, we have accomplished so much. This upstart network with its unique blend of programming brought The CW into the forefront of pop culture and social media. We made water cooler TV in a multi-platform world. We embraced what the audience wanted and gave it to them.
Many attempted to emulate The CW, but few succeeded.
Collectively, we Dared to Defy the conventional norms, converted weaknesses into strengths and forged new paths that no one had done before in the industry. The CW has become a recognized leader on-screen and behind the scenes with our efforts to showcase and embrace the diverse world we inhabit. We created an environment for people to express themselves without fear and created stability in an unstable business. We found ways to share our differences of opinion and arrive at a unified consensus.
As I end my CW journey, I will commence a new one. I have activated my production/consulting company Pinestreet Entertainment. I look forward to bringing some of my projects to The CW.
May the network’s journey continue to be one of unparalleled success and may all of you continue to Dare to Defy the naysayers.
I know I will.
With respect and admiration,