Deborah Barak, one of the most seasoned and respected TV business affairs executives, is expanding her responsibilities. As she marks her 30th anniversary at CBS, Barak has been named President of Business Operations.
Barak, who had been EVP, Business Operations, CBS Network Television Entertainment Group, overseeing business affairs for the entertainment operations at both the network and the studio since 2004, will now also oversee business affairs for CBS News. She also will report directly to Leslie Moonves, President and CEO, CBS Corporation, having previously reported jointly to outgoing CBS Entertainment chairman Nina Tassler and CBS TV Studios president David Stapf. In addition to her business affairs duties, Barak, who has signed a new contract, will continue to represent CBS on the board that oversees The CW.
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“Debby’s business acumen, deal-making skills and strategic vision have been instrumental in supporting the success of our programming and overall Entertainment business,” said Moonves. “She is a forward-thinking executive who is always one step ahead on how new business models can work to build and enhance content assets. ”
During her tenure at CBS, Barak has led the network’s and studio’s highest-profile negotiations, most recently the talent and production agreements for CBS’s new late-night franchises with Stephen Colbert and James Corden, the first late-night shows to be produced by CBS Television Studios.
Barak also helped create the business template for CBS’ new model for summer original scripted series via lower network license fees and an in-season SVOD window. It has been used for Under The Dome, Extant, Zoo and the upcoming BrainDead.
Barak has handled license renewals for the network’s series, including the high-profile renegotiations for The Big Bang Theory, Two And A Half Men and The Late Show With David Letterman. In 2000, she drafted the original Survivor cast contract, which became a template for reality talent agreements.
Before being named EVP, Business Operations, CBS Network Television Entertainment Group, Barak served as EVP, Business Affairs, CBS Network Television Entertainment Group since 2004 and SVP, Business Affairs, CBS Entertainment from February 2002 through October 2004. Previously, she worked as SVP, Business Planning and Special Projects, VP, Associate General Counsel at CBS and Deputy West Coast Counsel, supervising the Network’s in-house productions.. Barak joined CBS in 1985 as Broadcast Counsel in the Network’s West Coast law department.
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