Fisher Communications fills vacant board seat


Selecting a director to fill the empty board seat at Fisher Communications was particularly important, since dissident shareholder FrontFour Capital is mounting a battle for control of the company. The new director is a name well-known in the television industry.

Anthony Cassara has been elected by the board to fill the seat that Deborah Bevier exited at the end of 2010. Cassara was President of the Paramount Pictures Television Stations Group from 1993 to 2000, growing it from six to 20 stations and taking it to record profits. Before that he had been General Manager of KTLA-TV Los Angeles.

Cassara had been a close associate of Jerry Perenchio at Chartwell Partners LLC, working with Perenchio to grow Univision Communications, expanding the O&O station group and launching TeleFutura as the company’s second broadcast network. Cassara served as a director of Univision from 2005 until the company was taken private for $13.7 billion in 2007. More recently he has served as an expert director of Young Broadcasting since its Chapter 11 filing and is a director of Hero Broadcasting, which owns bilingual KBEH-TV Los Angeles.

“Tony is a well-known industry veteran with more than thirty years of broadcast experience, and we are pleased to be able to bring his unique insights and proven track record to our board room. Tony has a well-documented history of growing broadcasting businesses and creating shareholder value and he will be a great asset to Fisher,” said Michael Wortsman, Chairman of the board at Fisher Communications. “

RBR-TVBR observation: Fisher hasn’t yet scheduled its annual shareholders meeting, but it should be a hot one. FrontFour is pushing hard for a sale and the company’s largest shareholder, Mario Gabelli, has stated a price range that would get him interested.