A Big Executive Pick Up For SummitMedia


Here’s a hiring that certainly deserves the radio industry’s attention. An individual who for the last decade has served as VP/Creative Director for NBC News has just been hired by a radio industry pure-play that recently closed on the purchase of 19 stations from The E.W. Scripps Co. for $47 million.

Taking the role of SVP/Creative Director at Birmingham, Ala.-based SummitMedia is Val Nicholas. In his new role, Nicholas is tasked with accelerating creative innovation in partnership with SummitMedia Sales, Marketing, Programming and Event leadership teams.

“We are very excited for Val to join the SummitMedia Team, and are confident his enthusiasm and creative talent will bolster our efforts to inspire our audiences and support our client’s needs,” said SummitMedia Chairman/CEO Carl Parmer.

Nicholas is an award-winning media producer, and has 7 Emmys from his time in television among his professional achievements.

At NBC News, he led the launch of digital properties for NBCNews.com and 360 initiatives such as “Hiring Our Heroes.” Created to remedy the unemployment crisis for post-9/11 veterans, the program provided image and sales promotion for NBC News, its national programs, local affiliates and resulted in 500,000 jobs for veterans.

Before that, Nicholas served as VP/Marketing at MSNBC. It is Nicholas who gave the network its mission statement “The Place for Politics,” and developed new cross­platform sales opportunities generating millions of dollars in incremental revenue.

Before joining NBC, he served as VP/Special Projects for ABC Entertainment, and Creative Director for NBC Entertainment.

Earlier in his career, he held the role of Executive Producer for Programming, Marketing and Special Events at NBC affiliate KCRA-3 in Sacramento.

More about SummitMedia:

Inside SummitMedia: Now A 50-Station Player

For $47 million, SummitMedia made it known to the U.S. broadcasting industry that it aims to play ball. It purchased 19 stations in four markets from The E.W. Scripps Co. — a move that will allow Summit to grow yet will not significantly transform the operation. Perhaps that’s exactly what Chairman/CEO Carl Parmer and SVP/Programming Bill Tanner have in mind.

SummitMedia Rolls Tide With New Learfield Deal

University of Alabama Athletics and its multimedia rights holder, Learfield, have announced a five-year agreement with SummitMedia to become the official radio home of the Crimson Tide Sports Network in Birmingham.

What’s Next For SummitMedia?

A pure-play radio broadcasting company active in six markets including Honolulu could be poised for growth in the coming months. That’s because Jon Kelly — a key investor in Birmingham, Ala.-based SummitMedia —has agreed to purchase the controlling interest in the company held by Highpoint Holdings.