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LEGO is getting a new CEO (its first non-Dane!) as Bali Padda takes over from Jorgen Vig Knudstrop, who becomes the company’s chairman. As part of the shuffle, Knudstrop will also become chairman of a new entity called the LEGO Brand Group with deputy chairman Thomas Kirk Kristensen. The new arm will allow private family shareholders to become more active owners; it aims to protect and develop the LEGO brand and brand-related activities (including the LEGOLAND attractions and LEGO Foundation).

A+E Networks bolsters its international executive team; Patrick Vien is now Executive MD for the EMEA; and Edward Sabin is Executive MD for Latin America, Canada, Asia, and ANZ. The two co-head commercial operations, programming, and content sales.

Hasbro’s Chairman, CEO & President, Brian Goldner, signs a contract extension through to 2020.

DreamWorks’ Mireille Soria steps from her post as Co-President of the animation studio.

Erin McPherson is Verizon’s new VP Content & Strategy, succeeding Terry Denson, who departed this summer after 12 years. She’ll oversee programming, acquisitions, development, strategic partnerships, and original content across all platforms.

Teresa Harris joins Scholastic as Licensing & Brand Manager for licensed publishing; also promoted within the group are Erin McMahon to Senior Designer and Jenna Ballard to Associate Editor. Elsewhere, Hillary Doyle is promoted to Rights Manager.

Centum Books promotes Fiona Macmillan to MD and Adrian Stimpson to Head U.K. Sales, with more moves to be announced.

BOOM! Studios hires Arune Singh as VP Marketing, a new position reporting to President Publishing & Marketing Filip Sablik.

The SG Companies’ leadership succession plan sees current CEO Bernie Leifer stepping down after 30 years, to be replaced by Matt Feiner. Leifer is now Chairman.

In addition, the company has named Matt Feiner, formerly of Reebok and Stride Rite, as its new CEO. Leifer will transition to the role of chairman, effective Jan. 1, 2017.

Genius Brands Intl. taps Margaret Loesch as Executive Chairman and Deb Pierson as President of its Kid Genius Cartoon Channel.

Steve Jackson Games hires Ian Richards as Organized Play Manager.

Courtney Holt leaves her post as the top executive at Maker Studios to take on a new role within parent company Disney as the company folds Maker Studios into the Content & Media area of its Consumer Products & Interactive Media (DCPI) arm.

Chairman King Liu and CEO Tony Lo are retiring from Giant Manufacturing Co., parent to Giant Bicycles. Bonnie Tu takes over as chairperson and Young Liu as CEO.

Studio71, the multi-channel network arm of German mediaco ProSiebenSat.1, adds Naomi Lennon to its fleet of talent managers. With her arrive creators Rachel Levin, comedy brothers Jesse and Mike, Dublin-based reaction channel VladTeeVee, and the podcast The Tasteless Gentlemen.

Former Wizard World CMO Steve Shamus forms A-List Talent, a new agency focusing on celebrity autographs at shows.

Adrian Roche launches Black Horse Consulting after Alpha (Audley Toys) announced its move to Los Angeles, CA.

Lands’ End’s new CEO is Jerome Griffith.

Cheryl Heinonen is Macy’s new VP Corporate Communications, reporting to newly minted CEO Jeff Gennette.

VF Corp., in partnership with the Paradigm for Parity coalition, has made a commitment to achieving gender parity throughout its corporate leadership structure by 2030.


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