Accomplished Broadcast Leader with 30 Years of Large-Market Experience to Lead KTLA-TV and its Related Digital Operations, Mobile Apps, and Social Media Channels
LOS ANGELES, CA and IRVING, TX – Nexstar Media Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: NXST) announced today that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc., has appointed Janene Drafs as Vice President and General Manager of its broadcast and digital operations in Los Angeles, CA (DMA #2), overseeing KTLA-TV and its related website, mobile applications and social media channels. Ms. Drafs will begin her new duties on February 10 and report to Brian Jones, Chief Operating Officer of Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.
Ms. Drafs takes over leadership of KTLA-TV from media industry icon Don Corsini, who is retiring. Mr. Corsini has guided the station as President and General Manager since 2009, overseeing KTLA-TV’s unprecedented expansion of local news and setting records for ratings, revenue growth, and profitability during his tenure.
Ms. Drafs brings a track record of success and accomplishment to her new role at Nexstar Broadcasting, with more than three decades of experience in station and sales management, strategic planning, content creation across an array of media platforms, and the development of community partnerships. Since 2013, she has served as the Vice President and General Manager of a combination of media properties serving Seattle, WA (DMA #13), including two local television stations, KOMO-TV (ABC) and KUNS-TV (Univision) and their related digital operations, and three local radio stations, KOMO AM/FM, KPLZ FM, and KVI AM. Prior to assuming her current role, Ms. Drafs held positions of increasing responsibility at KUNS-TV and KOMO-TV, where she began her career as an account executive in 1992.
During her tenure at KUNS-TV and KOMO-TV, Ms. Drafs and her team successfully developed and executed a number of cross-platform initiatives designed to create a fully-integrated media approach to content, sales, and promotion, and various digital and social media channels including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. She launched three entertainment diginets, including Comet TV, Mundo Max, and Grit, and oversaw the creation of “Seattle Refined,” a locally-focused lifestyle program, and its companion website, seattlerefined.com, which has become a robust digital brand.
At KOMO-TV, she was responsible for expanding local news by eight hours per week. On weekends, she launched a new 4 p.m. newscast and expanded the evening news by half an hour. She also expanded the station’s weekday morning and afternoon news by 30 minutes each. In addition, Ms. Drafs helped create and develop “Newsdesk,” a live, fast-paced, streaming newscast, extending KOMO-TV’s weekday morning news show online from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. At KUNS-TV, she expanded the number of Seattle Sounders’ soccer games carried by the station to ten per season and launched the weekly sports highlight show, “En Accion.” Under Ms. Drafs’ leadership, KOMO-TV and KUNS-TV consistently set records for profitability, news ratings growth and revenue share. Additionally, she and her team created community partnerships with Seattle Children’s Hospital, Salvation Army, The Pike Place Market Foundation and a number of other local non-profits in the Seattle area.
While overseeing KOMO AM/FM, Ms. Drafs launched several successful podcasts focused on local news and opinionated talk and returned live broadcasts of University of Washington football and basketball games to the station, restoring KOMO AM/FM as the “Home of the Huskies.”
“Janene is the perfect choice to take the reins of leadership at KTLA-TV,” said Mr. Jones. “She worked her way up the ladder over the course of her career at KOMO-TV, and later at KUNS-TV, beginning in an entry-level sales position, and finishing as the leader of multiple media properties in one of the country’s largest markets. Through strategic vision and determined leadership, Janene has successfully met every challenge that she’s encountered. She also has a vast amount of experience in programming, sales, station operations and establishing meaningful community partnerships. She understands the importance of creating and developing unique local content and finding new ways to grow the local audience and meet the needs of advertisers and marketers. I am looking forward to working with her as she guides KTLA-TV in the years to come.”
“My 30-plus years in the media industry have prepared me well for this moment,” said Ms. Drafs. “My path through sales, programming, operations, and management has provided me with the kind of on-the-job experience one must possess to lead a station like the local powerhouse that is KTLA, and I am grateful to Nexstar for giving me this opportunity. From its dominance in local news to its innovative approach to local programming, such as its live coverage of the Oscars and the Rose Bowl Parade, KTLA’s reputation for excellence is well-earned. I am looking forward to working alongside the station’s talented and experienced team of professionals at such an exciting time.”
Throughout her career, Ms. Drafs has been deeply involved in the greater Seattle community, serving as a member of several boards, including Mothers Against Drunk Driving and the Seattle Advertising Federation. She is the outgoing President of the Washington State Association of Broadcasters, and current member of both the Seattle World Trade Center Board and the ABC Board of Governors.
Ms. Drafs graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in advertising communications. She and her husband, Steve Gahler, have two daughters, Megan and Claire. Ms. Drafs will be relocating to the Los Angeles area in the near future.
About Nexstar Media Group, Inc.
Nexstar Media Group is a leading diversified media company that leverages localism to bring new services and value to consumers and advertisers through its traditional media, digital and mobile media platforms. Nexstar owns, operates, programs or provides sales and other services to 197 television stations and related digital multicast signals reaching 115 markets or approximately 39% of all U.S. television households (reflecting the FCC’s UHF discount). Nexstar’s portfolio includes primary affiliates of NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, MyNetworkTV and The CW. Nexstar’s community portal websites offer additional hyper-local content and verticals for consumers and advertisers, allowing audiences to choose where, when and how they access content while creating new revenue opportunities. Nexstar also owns WGN America, a growing national general entertainment cable network and a 31.3% ownership stake in TV Food Network, a top-tier cable asset. For more information please visit www.nexstar.tv.
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