CNN CEO Chris Licht departed the network on June 7th. “This was an exciting but incredibly challenging assignment and I learned a lot over the past 13 months. I’ve been lucky enough to have had a successful, fulfilling career and I look forward to my next chapter. I wish the team at CNN the very best, always,” Licht said in a statement.
Now it looks like three other CNN executives are following him out the door: Kris Cally and Matt Dorning, both from the communications departments, are leaving, as is Devan Cayea, who was Licht’s chief of staff. Such is what CNN reporter Oliver Darcy announced on Twitter, saying, “The top two leaders of CNN’s communications department, Kris Coratti Kelly and Matt Dornic, as well as Licht’s chief of staff, Devan Cayea, will also depart the company, I’m told.”
The top two leaders of CNN's communications department, Kris Coratti Kelly and Matt Dornic, as well as Licht's chief of staff, Devan Cayea, will also depart the company, I'm told.
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) June 7, 2023
Continuing, Darcy claimed that David Zaslav, who is the chief executive of CNN’s parent company, Warner Bros, started thinking about removing Licht after the Atlantic released an article skewering Licht, claiming that employees didn’t trust him to lead the network into the future. “Zaslav started seriously mulling relieving Licht of his duties as CNN chief over the weekend, after The Atlantic’s brutal profile had crystalized existing concerns about his leadership, I’m told. The final decision was made earlier this week. Licht was informed Wednesday morning,” Zaslav said.
Zaslav, in a statement on Licht’s departure from CNN, said, “I have great respect for Chris, personally and professionally.” He added, “The job of leading CNN was never going to be easy, especially at a time of huge disruption and transformation, and he has poured his heart and soul into it.”
Continuing, Zaslav added that CNN would be looking for a new leader in the wake of Licht’s leaving and that the team currently in place to deal with the situation is one in which he has faith to handle the situation, saying, “While we know we have work to do as we look to identify a new leader, we have absolute confidence in the team we have in place and will continue to fight for CNN and its world-class journalism.”
He reiterated that point about trusting the team put in place to deal with CNN after Licht’s departure, adding, “We have great confidence in this group and will fully support them until a new CEO is named. We are in good hands, allowing us to take the time we need to run a thoughtful and thorough search for a new leader.”
A team of three has been put in place to handle CNN is composed of Amy Entelis, currently the executive vice president of talent and content development, Virginia Moseley, CNN’s current executive vice president of editorial, and Eric Sherling, the executive vice president of U.S. programming. That is only a temporary leadership team as the network searches for a new CEO.
"*" indicates required fields