Hearst Names Laura Ling VP of Very Local

By Kevin Eck 

Hearst Television has promoted Laura Ling to vice president of Very Local, a division of Hearst Television, overseeing programming for the streaming unit.

Ling has worked as Hearst Television’s director of programming for its streaming video services group since 2021.

In this new role, Ling oversees the strategy and team responsible for new, locally focused original programming for Very Local, which Hearst Television launched in 2021 to provide original non-scripted programming across genres with a focus on production in Hearst Television’s more than two dozen local media markets.


“Laura is an exceptional creative mind and leader whose work highlighting local communities across the United States has broken new ground for Hearst Television, allowing us to tell more original stories celebrating localism,” said Jordan Wertlieb, president of Hearst Television. “Her focus on quality story-telling and innovative concepts has been crucial to the development of our Very Local streaming product.”

Before joining Hearst Television, Ling served as head of development for Discovery Digital Networks and VP of news and documentaries at Current TV. She has worked as a producer and host for E!, Discovery, Z Living and Channel One News, and her work has appeared on projects for Nightline, NBC, PBS and elsewhere.

“Laura is one of the most talented executives and documentarians I’ve ever had the privilege of working with. Her sense of storytelling, her innate instinct for the narratives that celebrate the people and communities we serve, and her mentorship and leadership of creative talent are all unparalleled.” said Andrew Fitzgerald, Hearst Television’s senior vice president, streaming video services. “She is a master producer, with an eye to every detail and a mind to the overall strategy.”

The Very Local team produces more than 100 hours of content a year, including more than a dozen titles and hundreds of interstitial programs, and manages the schedules of more than two dozen FAST channels.