Proven Nexstar Executive Appointed to Newly Created Position Overseeing All Company-Wide Local Content Initiatives and Expanded Washington DC News Bureau
Chris Berg Promoted to the Position of Senior Director of Local Content Development
IRVING, Texas – Nexstar Media Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXST) announced today the promotion of Jerry Walsh to the new position of Vice President of Local Content Development, responsible for leading the development and execution of the Company’s strategic local content and viewer engagement initiatives for its broadcast and digital operations in 100 markets across the United States. Since 2011, Mr. Walsh has served as the Company’s Director of Local Content Development. The appointment is effective immediately and Mr. Walsh will continue to report to Blake Russell, Senior Vice President, Station Operations and Content Development of Nexstar Media Group. Nexstar also announced that Chris Berg, who most recently served as Director of Content Development-West at Nexstar, has been promoted to Senior Director of Local Content Development. He will report to Jerry Walsh.
The promotions of Mr. Walsh and Mr. Berg reflect Nexstar’s expanding scale and strategy to appoint proven broadcast and digital media leaders to oversee the development of its innovative multi-platform local news and community-focused content on a regional basis, while enhancing its commitment to serve viewers, clients and advertising partners.
In his new role, Mr. Walsh will work across the Nexstar organization and with other personnel to advance the Company’s local programming and content strategies, refine production standards and best practices, develop creative collaborations and content partnerships, and establish corporate and regional business objectives. He will be responsible for developing, executing and monitoring action plans aimed at achieving economic and operational goals, growing ratings and revenue share and improving audience interaction and engagement with Nexstar’s broadcast, digital and mobile media platforms.
In addition, he will lead a team of three Local Content Development Directors responsible for the Company’s initiatives focused on brand development, local content leadership and excellence in viewer and client experience and service. Mr. Walsh will also have direct oversight of Nexstar’s recently expanded Washington DC news bureau, leading the strategic direction of the Company’s broadcast and digital local content offerings from Capitol Hill.
An accomplished local media executive, Jerry Walsh brings over 24 years of experience to his new role, including 10 years with Nexstar, with extensive expertise in local news programming and production, digital and social media integration, content monetization, strategic planning and brand positioning across multiple media platforms. During his tenure as Director of Local Content Development, Mr. Walsh was instrumental in developing innovative programming initiatives on a local and regional basis while forming unique content and promotional partnerships that have proven to engage and grow local audiences across the Nexstar’s broadcast and digital platforms. He played a critical role in establishing capital news bureaus in Nexstar’s markets and implemented Company-wide guidance for political news coverage under the “Your Local Election Headquarters” brand. In addition, he has enhanced content sharing initiatives by forming regional alliances and working with networks to showcase local reporting from major events including the Sochi and Rio Olympics, the Super Bowl and the Daytona 500, among others. Importantly, Mr. Walsh developed Nexstar’s internal market research system that gathers valuable information to identify content opportunities in each of its local markets—a strategy that has been invaluable in growing audience and revenue share across the Company. Throughout his career, Mr. Walsh’s programming and content initiatives have received numerous accolades including Edward R. Murrow and Emmy Awards.
Commenting on the appointment, Blake Russell, said, “Jerry is a proven leader who has helped Nexstar establish a comprehensive cross-platform content development strategy that is not only adaptive to changing content consumption behaviors and the competitive media landscape, but also facilitates audience and revenue share growth across our local media operations. His commitment to innovative, cross-platform storytelling and his ability to leverage the value of local content creation across multiple platforms has proven to be of value to our viewers and advertisers. Importantly, he has created new revenue-generating opportunities by driving our stations to produce programming that can be shared on a regional or group-wide level, while forming unique content partnerships and implementing digital and mobile content strategies that further enhance audience reach and engagement. We have highest degree of confidence in his ability to continue advancing the innovative local programming, community-focused content, products and services that we provide to local communities and advertisers across the United States.”
Mr. Walsh added, “Nexstar has a unique position in the industry as we are at national scale but operate almost exclusively on the local level across the 100 individual markets we serve each day. My role is to explore how we can continue developing and efficiently utilizing our unique content portfolio, to bring local viewers more local programming and community-focused content, while offering local and national advertisers unrivaled consumer reach and influence. At Nexstar, our local audiences remain at the center of every decision that we make. We are constantly evolving our approach and our objective is to be the consumers’ and advertisers’ number one choice across all screens and devices in each of the markets where we operate. In this new role, I will leverage the news programming and local content production experience built over my career to generate results, increase audience engagement and develop new opportunities to drive revenue and market share growth through the creation and delivery of unique local cross-platform content.”
In his new role, Mr. Berg will work across Nexstar’s operations to create compelling local content that extends across its on-air and digital platforms. Mr. Berg will also be working across the organization with News Directors and the Company’s Digital Media teams to further strengthen Nexstar’s local broadcast news products and brands, web and mobile content concepts, and social media engagement initiatives. Additionally, he will be responsible for creating and executing local content strategies aimed at increasing local viewership to further enhance the experience for viewers and advertisers.
Chris Berg brings a 28 year career of accomplishments to his new role including the creation of high profile local content including news, lifestyle and sports programming in his most recent role as Director of Content Development-West which he held since 2014. As Director of Content Development-West, Mr. Berg was Responsible for creating and executing critically acclaimed local political debate coverage for events such as the 2014 Iowa US Senate race, the 2015 Louisiana Governor’s race and the 2016 Nevada US Senate race. In addition, he helped launch weekly political shows in the Des Moines, Sioux City, Baton Rouge, Lubbock, Amarillo, Fresno, Bakersfield and Las Vegas markets. Mr. Berg also created the Texas Capital bureau that services all of the markets servicing DMA’s that touch Texas and dramatically expanded the content of the Las Vegas KLAS-TV New Year’s Eve countdown show and syndicated it to more than a dozen Nexstar markets. In terms of sports programming, he created the first of its kind syndicated topical coverage of the Texas Rangers’ spring training program and significantly increased content for Silver Star nation which focuses on Dallas Cowboys coverage. Prior to serving as Director of Content Development-West for Nexstar, Mr. Berg was the Assistant News Director of WFAA-TV, the ABC-affiliated station serving the Dallas/Fort Worth, TX DMA and previously served as the News Director of ABC-affiliated KSTP-TV in St. Paul/Minneapolis, MN and KOB-TV(NBC) / KASA-TV(FOX) in Albuquerque/Santa Fe, NM.
Commenting on the appointment, Blake Russell said, “Chris’ promotion reinforces Nexstar’s commitment to ‘Keeping It Local’ in our markets and extending best practices across the entire 100 market Nexstar platform. Chris has an impressive industry background with extensive experience in local content creation, local news production, promotion and programming as well as strategic planning and positioning across multiple media platforms. His extensive broadcast industry knowledge and long-term success in showcasing innovative local content and political insight makes Chris the ideal candidate to support our company-wide initiative to expand our creation and development of original local content that can be shared across the Nexstar platform.”
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 170 television stations and related digital multicast signals reaching 100 markets or approximately 39% of all U.S. television households. 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. For more information please visit www.nexstar.tv.
This communication includes forward-looking statements. We have based these forward-looking statements on our current expectations and projections about future events. Forward-looking statements include information preceded by, followed by, or that includes the words “guidance,” “believes,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “could,” or similar expressions. For these statements, Nexstar claims the protection of the safe harbor for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The forward-looking statements contained in this communication, concerning, among other things, future financial performance, including changes in net revenue, cash flow and operating expenses, involve risks and uncertainties, and are subject to change based on various important factors, including the impact of changes in national and regional economies, the ability to service and refinance our outstanding debt, successful integration of acquired television stations and digital businesses (including achievement of synergies and cost reductions), pricing fluctuations in local and national advertising, future regulatory actions and conditions in the television stations’ operating areas, competition from others in the broadcast television markets, volatility in programming costs, the effects of governmental regulation of broadcasting, industry consolidation, technological developments and major world news events. Nexstar undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. In light of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, the forward-looking events discussed in this communication might not occur. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this release. For more details on factors that could affect these expectations, please see Nexstar’s other filings with the SEC.
SVP, Station Operations / Content Development
Nexstar Media Group, Inc.
Joseph Jaffoni, Jennifer Neuman
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