Rashida Jones Upped to SVP of Specials for NBC News & MSNBC

By Chris Ariens Comment

NBC News president Noah Oppenheim is making changes to the executive ranks.

Rashida Jones, who joined MSNBC in 2013 from WIS-TV, where she was news director, has been upped to SVP of specials for the combined NBC News and MSNBC.

“She’s been a critical part of MSNBC’s dayside success-the best growth story in cable news,” Oppenheim writes in a note to staff, obtained by TVNewser. “She brings deep knowledge of cable, breaking news coverage and events programming to her new role.”

Jones’s promotion means longtime head of specials, Mark Lukasiewicz, is departing NBC News after 16 years. He’ll stay on for the transition, then move on to NBCUniversal’s Talent Lab. Before NBC News, Lukasiewicz spent 11 years at ABC News.

Here’s Oppenheim’s note:

Colleagues,

NBC News and MSNBC are working more closely together than ever. Specials is no exception, so we are expanding NBC News Specials to now support MSNBC at a crucial moment when there is greater viewer demand for this kind of programming.

I’ve asked Rashida Jones to become SVP, Specials, NBC News & MSNBC, which will combine our resources and considerable expertise in this area for maximum impact. Rashida will work with Bob Epstein and the NBC News Specials team, and will continue to work closely with Phil and his team-especially Jeff Kepnes, who recently joined as MSNBC’s Senior EP of Specials-as well as with Marc Greenstein.

Rashida joined MSNBC in 2013 as EP for Chris Jansing and was promoted to Managing Editor in early 2014. She’s been a critical part of MSNBC’s dayside success-the best growth story in cable news. She brings deep knowledge of cable, breaking news coverage and events programming to her new role.

I also want to acknowledge Mark Lukasiewicz, who is stepping down from NBC News after a remarkable 16-year run. Luk has been a consistent leader and innovator for NBC News, the driving force behind our breaking news live coverage as well as major projects such as Democracy Plaza, Education Nation, NewsConnect and the 4th floor newsroom. I have asked him to stay on for a brief time to ensure a smooth transition at Specials. Following that he will be using his incredible experience in change management as a resource for NBCUniversal’s Talent Lab.

Please join me in congratulating Rashida on her new role, and thanking Mark for his significant and many contributions to NBC News.

Noah

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