Former HLN chief Scot Safon has joined The Weather Channel as its executive VP and chief marketing officer, the company says.
Safon announced his departure from his corporate home of 22 years last month, as CNN president Jeff Zucker shook up his executive leadership team.
“I’ve decided it is time to leave my Turner home to explore what I want to do next,” Safon wrote to HLN staff at the time. “This week marks my 22nd anniversary at the company, and I look back at an experience that feels both very rewarding… and very complete.”
What he wants to do next looks similar to where he got his start: in marketing. Safon was the senior VP of marketing for TNT, before joining sister network CNN in 2002 as its senior VP of marketing. In 2007 he was named executive VP and chief marketing officer of CNN Worldwide. He became the GM of HLN in 2010.
As it happens, the two largest media companies in the Atlanta are are Turner Broadcasting (which owns CNN, TNT, Cartoon Network and other channels) and Weather Company (parent company of The Weather Channel). In other words, if you are a media executives in the city, your employment options are somewhat more limited than if you were in New York or Los Angeles.
Update: the official announcement is below.
THE WEATHER CHANNEL NAMES SCOT SAFON EVP and CMO
ATLANTA – September 23, 2013 – The Weather Channel® today announced that Scot Safon will be joining the network as executive vice president and chief marketing officer. Most recently, Safon served as executive vice president for CNN, managing the HLN network. In his new role, he will oversee all aspects of The Weather Channel brand, including marketing, design, weather presentation and creative services. Safon will serve as a member of The Weather Company’s executive leadership team and will report to David Clark, president of The Weather Channel network.
“Scot has an almost legendary track record of building brands that people rely on and trust, making him an ideal fit as we grow our network,” said Clark. “We couldn’t be more excited about the energy and vision he will bring, and we know he will be integral to our future success.”
Safon will join Weather September 30 and will be based at the network’s Atlanta headquarters. He will be responsible for developing and overseeing the marketing strategy for and creative expression of The Weather Channel brand. This will include leading The Weather Company marketing council and working with all business units of the company to ensure consistency across brands.
Prior to his years leading HLN, Safon was EVP and chief marketing officer of CNN, with responsibility for all consumer and trade communication for CNN U.S. Television, CNN.com, CNN International, HLN, CNN Mobile and all CNN branded services. Safon’s teams have created award-winning marketing and promotion for such programs as Anderson Cooper 360, Nancy Grace, God’s Warriors, Black in America, Planet in Peril and CNN’s worldwide and multiplatform coverage of the 2008 Presidential Election, Hurricane Katrina and the Southeast Asia tsunami. Prior to joining CNN, Safon was senior vice president of marketing for Turner Network Television (TNT) where he was part of the senior leadership responsible for the “We Know Drama” campaign.
Safon is active in his industry, having served as a board member of PromaxBDA and on the executive advisory board of the Atlanta chapter of the American Marketing Association. Safon earned a bachelor’s degree in history and economics from the University of Virginia and an MBA from Cornell University. He and his family reside in Atlanta.