Former MSNBC Boss to WNYC/Public Radio

By Chris Ariens Comment

Mark Effron, who for four years was MSNBC’s VP of daytime programming, is heading to WNYC and Public Radio International to be the Executive Producer of ‘The Takeaway,’ the national morning drive news program. After leaving MSNBC in 2006, Effron was president and COO of Titan TV.

The Takeaway, is hosted by one-time NBC News correspondent and MSNBC host John Hockenberry. It is a co-production of Public Radio International and WNYC Radio, in editorial collaboration with The BBC World Service, The New York Times, and WGBH Boston Radio.

WNYC & PRI’s The Takeaway
Names Mark Effron Executive Producer

(June 19, 2009, New York and Minneapolis) – Mark Effron, an experienced journalist and television and digital media executive, has been named Executive Producer of The Takeaway, the national morning drive news program that combines the solid journalism public radio is known for with a live, dynamic, and personality-driven format.

The Takeaway, hosted by John Hockenberry and other journalists, is a co-production of Public Radio International and WNYC Radio, in editorial collaboration with The BBC World Service, The New York Times, and WGBH Boston Radio.

“As we searched for an Executive Producer, we knew we wanted someone to match the energy and ambition of The Takeaway and Mark stood out as a great fit,” said Dean Cappello, Chief Creative Officer, Sr. Vice President, Programming at WNYC. “The world of journalism and media is changing so rapidly that public radio needs the experience and competitive savvy that Mark clearly brings. He’s a great leader at a time of tremendous opportunity for The Takeaway and public media.”

“Mark’s extensive news experience at both the station and network level, along with his experience in new media, make him an ideal fit for this position,” said Melinda Ward, Senior Vice President, Content at PRI. “He also shares The Takeaway’s goals of broadening the reach of public radio and giving Americans the information they need to have conversations about important topics.”

“I am excited about joining WNYC and PRI, and having the opportunity to lead the stellar group of journalists and contributors on The Takeaway,” said Effron. “I’ve long been a public radio listener, and I believe that there’s never been a greater need for the type of journalism — on all platforms — that public broadcasting provides daily. This position is an honor and a responsibility. ”

Effron’s decades of news experience includes four years as Vice President of Daytime Programming at MSNBC, where he led all crisis and breaking news programming, and was responsible for building news personalities that would connect with contemporary viewers. His achievements included overseeing the critically-acclaimed coverage of key news stories including the Iraq War, the shuttle disaster, and Hurricane Katrina. He was also part of a select MSNBC team involved in all aspects of running the cable channel.

Prior, Effron served as the Vice President of News for Post-Newsweek Stations, the broadcasting division of The Washington Post Company. There, he was responsible for the news programming on six stations, three of which achieved #1 ranking during his tenure. He also led the development of the network’s internet strategy.

Most recently, Effron helped develop and run, as President and COO, Titan TV Media, a digital network that partners with local affiliates to create fully-monetizable web properties. There he directed all operations at the company, including the creation of original video programming, product development, and the national rollout of Webby Award-winning web channels and platforms to affiliates.

Effron is also a prolific writer on industry trends, with particular focus on those that involve the crossroads of new media and traditional media. Most recently, he wrote for the Radio and TV News Directors Association Magazine, The Communicator, on the enduring influence of Edward R. Murrow, fifty years after his famous speech criticizing the broadcast networks. Effron has authored two detective novels, and hopes to see them published in the next year.