Name: Jane Root
Title:
Former president/GM, Discovery Channel & The Science Channel
Age:
50
Years in Industry:
20+
Years left in the industry:
When people stop being curious about their world.”  

Name: Marjorie Kaplan
Title: President/GM, Animal Planet and Discovery Kids Media
Age: “Under 21 in dog years.”
Years in Industry: “A dozen!”
Years left in Industry: “A long, long time!”

 

Why Them? Despite learning a couple of weeks ago that Root would be leaving Discovery, we’re keeping her in the 100 slot she occupied before the news broke. Why? Her strong legacy. Root, who had just added The Science Channel to her Discovery docket, has been at the helm for the launch of some of the flagship network’s top-rated series, including “Deadliest Catch” and “Man vs. Wild,” plus buzz-generating programming like “Planet Earth.” She also set the stage for investing more capital to spice up Science. The inaugural Space Week, which ran this May, brought in 50% prime-time ratings increases among key male demographics vs. the current quarter average. Root’s mark will be felt for years. And while Ford’s role at Discovery was lower key before Root’s departure, he’ll now take over Discovery’s main branded channel and no doubt be a major force. We expect this programming legend to reassert his 100 status in ’08. As for Kaplan, she’s now completely checked in to “Meerkat Manor” and pushing to build on that series’ success for Animal Planet by creating other “animal stars,” continuing the Steve Irwin legacy with daughter Bindi’s series, and creating buzz-worthy movie nights. And she’s certainly not neglecting her first child, Discovery Kids!, which again this year bested the other kids networks in total Daytime Emmy nominations.  CAO

 

Jane Root

I knew the cable industry was for me when: “I decided to leave the UK.”
The cable industry’s biggest challenge in 2008 is: “Keep being the innovation leader.”
The coolest new cable tech is: “GRiPit – we can optimize our air like never before.”
Defining career moment: “Greenlighting a five minute taster tape that a trainee brought in for me to screen and having it turn into ‘The Office’.”
Person I most admire in the cable industry and why: “Obviously, David Zaslav.”
Biggest cable surprise of 2007: “Finding ‘Mad Men’ on AMC”
Top personal achievement in 2007: “Having one of the highest rated special series of the year without a single person, live or animated, appearing in it.”
Person (other than my current boss) who I’d most like to work for: Mike Rowe
In my free time, I like to: “Sleep”
Favorite city: “Dutch Harbor, Alaska”
Favorite sports team:I guess I am officially drinking the Kool Aid… The Redskins!”

Marjorie Kaplan
What is your favorite word?
“Yes. Yes you may. Yes I will. Yes.”
What is your least favorite word? “Synergistic”
What turns you on? “Tigers”
What turns you off? “Mean-spiritedness”
What sound do you love? “The ocean”
What sound do you hate? “Whining”
What profession other than yours would like to attempt? “Folk singer”
What profession would you not like to participate in? “Professional wrestling”
If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? “Your family’s not here yet. Would you like to wait at the bar?”

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