WQED Multimedia announced today that George L. Miles, Jr., the longest-serving chief executive of WQED, will retire as President and CEO effective one year from this date – September 30, 2010. The news came as part of the station’s annual meeting and released in an email press release. Deborah Acklin, currently Executive Vice President and General Manager, was promoted to the new position of Chief Operating Officer and will be elected to the Board of Directors later this year once a by-law change has taken place. She will continue to oversee day-to-day operations and strategies for the multimedia company.
Miles said, “We have a brand new strategic plan that will guide us through the next five years and beyond. Through diligence and foresight, we completed a fiscal year in the black again in spite of months of challenges and economic uncertainty. And we are a streamlined organization focused on our core business of electronic media and communications.” He continued by saying that he strongly believed that it was time to begin a transition of the organization by implementing a long-term succession plan which would make WQED sustainable for future decades.
George Miles has been WQED’s President and CEO since September 1994. He held leadership roles at public station WNET-TV in New York, KDKA-TV and Radio in Pittsburgh, WPCQ in Charlotte, North Carolina and WBZ-TV in Boston, Massachusetts. Additionally he was Vice President and Controller of Westinghouse Broadcasting Television Group in New York and the US Department of Defense. He also served a tour of duty in Vietnam for the US Army.
Deborah Acklin is considered to be one of the country’s pre-eminent women in media. She first served WQED as an executive producer and later as senior vice president of production and technology. WQED’S magazine program, “OnQ” is a brainchild of Acklin. She began her career at KDKA-TV and worked her way through the ranks of the newsroom before being promoted to executive producer.