Debra O’Connell has been promoted to president of ABC National Sales, succeeding John Watkins who announced his retirement in November.
“Debra is a fantastic executive, a great collaborator, and the perfect choice to head NTVS,” Rebecca Campbell, president of the ABC Owned Television Stations Group said in a statement. “Her many years with ABC and her excellent reputation within the advertising industry, as well as her vision for the future of the division, are a huge asset for our company.”
O’Connell will be responsible for national advertising sales for WABC in New York, KABC in Los Angeles, WLS in Chicago, WPVI in Philadelphia, KGO in San Francisco, KTRK in Houston, WTVD in Raleigh-Durham and KFSN in Fresno. She will also oversee national sales for the “Live Well Network” and ABC Regional Sports & Entertainment.
“I am thrilled to lead the best spot sales and marketing team for the top station group in the country,” O’Connell said. “I look forward to continuing our tradition of excellence in serving our advertisers with the most creative and innovative solutions in the industry.”
O’Connell has worked for ABC for 17 years. She was named SVP of sales for ABC National Television Sales in 2011. Before that she was SVP of Multimedia Sales and Marketing for the division from 2006 to 2011. She has also served as VP of Marketing at WABC.