Amazon Studios has named NBC Entertainment executive Jennifer Salke as its new leader, several months after Roy Price was forced to resign as the head of the studio amid allegations of sexual harassment.
Salke had been the president of NBC Entertainment since July 2011, where she was responsible for comedy development, drama development, current programming, casting, and diversity programming initiatives, among other things.
“I’m incredibly excited about the future at Amazon Studios,” Salke, 53, said in a statement, as reported by The New York Times. “In the studio’s relatively short existence they have innovated, disrupted and created characters that are already an indelible part of pop culture. I am both honored and emboldened by the opportunity to lead this extraordinary business.”
Amazon is locked in a pitched battle for original content with other streaming services such as Netlfix and Hulu. The studio has had success in recent years with TV series such as “Transparent,” “The Man in the High Castle,” “Mozart in the Jungle,” and more. And last year, Amazon became the first streaming studio to win an Academy Award.
Price joined the studio in 2004, but stepped aside last October after a producer accused him of lewd conduct and comments. Three more execs left in the days following Price’s departure.
— The Seattle Art Museum has hired Manish Engineer as the museum’s first chief technology officer. In the newly created position, he will oversee technology and digital efforts in order to amplify the museum’s mission and improve business operations.
“As our first CTO, Manish will lead the museum to greater levels of engagement with exciting new technologies in support of SAM’s mission to connect art to life,” said Kimerly Rorschach, Illsley Ball Nordstrom Director and CEO, said in a news release. “His expertise, experience, and genuine love of art will help us deploy technology to serve broad audiences more effectively than ever.”
Engineer was previously a project director in the membership and development departments at the Museum of Modern Art, where he also worked as the New York institution’s IT associate director of applications.
Engineer also spent time at Penguin Random House on several high profile projects developing apps and complex e-books for former First Lady Michelle Obama, Giada De Laurentiis, and Max Brooks’ “World War Z” novel, according to the release.
“I’m 57 years old. I want to retire while I am still young and spry enough to enjoy life,” Thompson wrote. “To spend more time with those I love. To travel. To sail. To write, take photos, and finally learn to play my guitar. To slay fish. Maybe hack up a golf course now and then.”
Thompson — who calls himself a “tech savvy real estate professional” on LinkedIn — said that he does not have a firm date yet for when he will hang things up, but is looking at sometime this summer, when he had already planned to use a “rest and recharge” sabbatical at the company.
“I owe Zillow Group a tremendous amount of gratitude, and I care very deeply about this company,” Thompson wrote. “I want to give my team time to transition me out and work through replacing what I do. Plans are in place, they’re insanely smart people, no one is irreplaceable, and they won’t miss a beat without me there.”
Thompson also hinted at doing consulting work for Zillow Group in the future.