Hunter Thomson
Manager, National Accounts
Scripps Networks Interactive
OK. So as ink stained wretches, we’ll admit that the similarity between the name of this year’s Rookie of the Year and the original Gonzo Journalist Hunter S. Thompson certainly may have influenced this pick just a little bit. But of course, it’s not the reason Scripps’ manager of national accounts takes home the coveted Rookie title this year. In fact, only 2 years into his Scripps gig, he’s already caught the attention of superiors as he partners with affiliates to drive ratings growth and solidify win-win relationships. In ’12, he negotiated affiliate deals with 3 major MSOs not known as shrinking violets: DISH, DirecTV and Cablevision. And his promos with those affiliates can be tied directly back to ratings growth. One deal with a major distributor yielded a 40% savings in expenses. Another resulted in a $500K media credit for Scripps brands to air promo tune-in spots. Notes Takashi Nakano, director of national accounts: “He is a creative problem solver that will push the envelope to the limits. He thrives on being the innovator and the first at anything.” We expect to hear a lot more about Thomson in the future. But a much larger question: Will Johnny Depp play him in the movie of his life? We’ll see.

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