Matt Cherniss Steps Down At WGN America

The president-GM of the cable network and Tribune Studios is leaving at the end of June. Gavin Harvey will serve as interim president of WGN America.

Tribune Media Co. today announced that Matt Cherniss, president and general manager of WGN America and Tribune Studios since March 2013, has decided to step down at the end of the month.   

“I’ve had the great honor of leading the transformation of WGN America from a superstation to a fully distributed cable network, and the great privilege of leading a talented and wonderful team,” Cherniss said. “I am tremendously proud of all of the strides we’ve made and what we were able to accomplish in a short period of time.”   

Peter Kern, Tribune Media CEO, said: “We are grateful to Matt for his leadership, and creative vision in transforming WGN America.  He’s had a tremendous impact on the company, and we thank him for his significant contributions.” 

Cherniss expanded WGN America’s reach, its audience and presence with viewers with brand-defining original programming. In addition, the network’s advertisers more than doubled and distribution increased by nearly 10 million homes. 

WGN America debuted its first original series Salem in 2014, premiering to record highs for the network, followed by the critically acclaimed drama Manhattan, which garnered the network’s first Emmy Award.  The momentum continued with the 2016 launch of Underground and Outsiders, which consistently ranked among the top 20 cable dramas on television. 

Kern has named television industry veteran Gavin Harvey to serve as interim president of WGN America. Harvey has a deep background in the cable industry, serving in executive roles with networks including E! and FX, and leading Versus, Fuse and Sportsman’s Channel.

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