Al Lustgarten To Retire As Hearst TV SVP Next Year
Alvin R. Lustgarten, who since 2020 has been Hearst Television’s senior vice president, technology and information services, will retire in summer 2023, capping more than three decades with Hearst Television and more than four decades in various roles within Hearst corporation.
Prior to his current title, Lustgarten was, since 2001, vice president, technology and information services overseeing the company’s technology, information, and back-office ad operation services. Lustgarten has also provided strategic leadership for many of the company’s new technology initiatives, including artificial intelligence, machine learning and analytics; has played a critical role in overseeing Hearst Television’s cloud transformation; and has led all aspects of its information security program.
“Al has been one of the most important common threads in the Hearst Television tapestry for over thirty years,” said Hearst Television President Jordan Wertlieb. “His leadership of the technology strategy, systems, and processes as well as his mentorship of many of our colleagues, has been instrumental in the evolution of Hearst Television from its original footprint to the significant scale of today’s company. We are all grateful for the significant contributions to our company and the industry that Al has made to position all of our businesses for success for years to come.”
John Drain, Hearst Television’s chief financial officer, said: “During his tenure at Hearst Television, Al has witnessed many advancements in broadcast technologies, business models, and the operational needs that accompanied each of these changes. Al has consistently proven himself to be a versatile executive, meeting every new challenge and leadership opportunity. He has led many innovation initiatives to re-orient and re-tool legacy practices and systems to meet contemporary demands and anticipate next generation needs. It’s been rewarding to have him as a valued colleague.”
“I’ve been fortunate and privileged to spend nearly my entire career at Hearst,” Lustgarten said. “The company has afforded me incredible opportunities — such as enabling me to be a part of the team building Hearst Television into one of America’s premier local broadcast companies. I’m thankful to all those who have worked with me, mentored me and supported me; they have all contributed significantly to my success.”
Before Hearst Television, Lustgarten served in finance, accounting, and technology positions within parent company Hearst and Hearst Magazines, which he joined in 1981.
During his years at Hearst Television, Lustgarten played instrumental roles in the development of the company’s sales and financial reporting systems and its IT and communications infrastructures, among many other accomplishments.
Lustgarten also has held leadership roles within the television industry, especially focused on efforts to modernize business practices. He was a founding member of the TV Interface Practices (TIP) Initiative, a working consortium formed by local television broadcasters dedicated to promoting open interfaces to streamline advertising transactions for broadcasters and their media agency partners. Earlier this year, in partnership with colleagues from Gray Television, Graham Media, and CoxReps, Lustgarten was instrumental in Hearst Television’s investment in a Media Sales Gateway named Admiral — a sell-side tool that provides both the infrastructure and workflows to automate converged advertising sales.
Lustgarten serves on numerous industry and Hearst corporate advisory committees and boards, representing the interests of Hearst Television’s technology, security, and ad operations, and has been a frequent speaker at industry and partner conferences. In 2022, he was named among “Broadcast Media’s Top Tech Leaders” by Radio+Television Business Report.
Lustgarten received his undergraduate degree from the University of Hartford and holds an MBA from Fairleigh Dickinson University where he is an active participant in the school’s Silberman College of Business alumni program.