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Thomas-Graham Takes The Reins At CNBC

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NEW YORK--NBC named Pamela Thomas-Graham as chief executive of the CNBC business-news network, tapping a relative newcomer to the television business at a time of flat ratings and a general slowdown in ad spending, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Ms. Thomas-Graham, 38 years old, takes over the CEO post from Bill Bolster, who only about five months ago was named chairman and chief executive of the cable-TV channel. Ms. Thomas-Graham will report to Andrew Lack, who was named president and chief operating officer of NBC in May.

Mr. Bolster, 57, moves to the new post of chairman and chief executive of CNBC International, and will report to Bob Wright, chairman and CEO of NBC and vice chairman of General Electric Co., parent company of NBC and CNBC. The CNBC chairman post remains empty. In a statement scheduled to be released Tuesday, NBC said the executive changes were "the next stage in the succession plan that was put in place this past February."

The move marks a rapid ascent for Ms. Thomas-Graham, who was named president and chief operating officer of CNBC in February, when Mr. Bolster changed from his former role as president.

Ms. Thomas-Graham joined NBC as president and CEO of CNBC.com in August 1999 from McKinsey & Co., where she was a leader of the consulting firm's media and entertainment practice. Ms. Thomas-Graham became McKinsey's first black woman partner in 1995.

GE is stepping up its efforts to improve the diversity of its upper-management ranks. Jeffrey Immelt, who takes over for John F. Welch Jr. as chairman and chief executive of GE in September, is expected to make diversity a priority.

Copyright (c) 2001 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.