UNIVERSAL CITY, CA - NBCUniversal chief diversity officer and former KNBC-TV Channel 4 general manager Paula Madison is leaving the company after 22 years to focus on her family's investment business, the L.A. Times is reporting.
Madison becomes the latest high-ranking executive to depart in the wake of Comcast Corp.'s takeover of NBCUniversal -- but for a different reason than many others, writes Meg James of The Times. Instead of being forced out, Madison wanted to become more involved with her family's 5-year-old company, Williams Group Holdings, which is majority owner in the Los Angeles Sparks professional basketball team and the largest investor in the Africa Channel.
NBCUniversal posted the following statement on their website:
After over two decades of distinguished service to NBCUniversal, Paula Madison, Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer for NBCUniversal, has announced plans to retire from the company.
Her last day with the company will be Friday, May 20, 2011 following the completion of Comcast and NBCUniversal’s first Joint Diversity Advisory Council meeting in Philadelphia.
Steve Burke, Chief Executive Officer, NBCUniversal and Executive Vice President, Comcast Corporation said, “Paula has had an extraordinary career from her early days as an award-winning journalist and station manager up to and including her appointment as the first Chief Diversity Officer in the history of NBCUniversal.
Her leadership and counsel throughout the course of the integration were invaluable. I want to thank her for that and for all of her many contributions to this company.”
Said Madison, “I’ve spent the best years of my career at NBCUniversal and the last four, serving as the company’s Chief Diversity Officer, have been my most memorable. I am proud about what we’ve been able to accomplish and under Steve Burke’s leadership, I am confident that NBCUniversal will be an industry leader in the area of Diversity. I will miss working with my team and colleagues but know that our friendships will carry on.”
An announcement regarding the appointment of NBCUniversal’s next Chief Diversity Officer is expected in the next several weeks.