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Lyle leaves Nat Geo

David Lyle, CEO of National Geographic Channels (NGC) US, is stepping down after three years in the role, a day after president Howard T Owens said he was leaving.

David Lyle

David Lyle

The move sees Courteney Monroe promoted to replace Lyle. She has been chief marketing officer for the Nat Geo networks since joining in January 2012 and will take up her new position on May 1, reporting to the board of directors.

Meanwhile, David Hill has been named chairman – he is currenty executive VP of NGC co-parent 21st Century Fox and a member of the NGC board.

Lyle joined Nat Geo in August 2011 and has overseen a repositioning of the main channel based on series and specials rather than one-off docs as it had been previously.

He has a long history at Fox where he helped create and launch the Fox Reality Channel and Fox Look. He was also president of entertainment at FremantleMedia where he led the team that launched American Idol.

His departure comes 24 hours after president Howard T Owens also announced his exit. The Reveille co-founder joined shortly after Lyle to oversee the new programming drive but stepped down yesterday.

In an email to contacts this afternoon Lyle said he would be returning to LA to pursue new projects and opportunities.

“I am thrilled that as a team we took the risks and introduced new ways of doing shows, and new genres of shows like drama, and even had a go at comedy,” he wrote.

“I am saddened to say farewell to a great group of colleagues at the channel – people who toiled passionately to bring great shows to air. I look forward to finding new projects and new opportunities and continue what I’d like to think of as my tradition of having success while having fun.”

Monroe will now take his place, overseeing all operations of the domestic Nat Geo channels, which are jointly owned by Fox Networks Group and the National Geographic Society. The US nets include National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo Wild and Nat Geo Mundo.

Prior to joining NGC, Monroe was executive VP of consumer marketing and digital platforms at premium US cablenet HBO, responsible for the marketing of the HBO and Cinemax brands and their programming across all platforms. She first joined HBO in 1998 and previously held roles at advertising firm BBDO, American Express and Salomon Brothers.

Meanwhile, Hill will provide counsel to the executive and programming leadership team and remain a member of the NGC board while continuing to play a leadership role in the production of American Idol.

He joined Fox Broadcasting in 1993 as president of Fox Sports and has spent time as chairman and CEO of Fox Broadcasting Company, president of DirecTV’s entertainment division and chairman, COO and executive producer at NGC.

In his current role as senior executive VP of 21st Century Fox, Hill provides senior strategic counsel to programming and production executives across the company’s film and television portfolio.

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