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11 February 3rd, 2016 Les Moonves Named CBS Chairman Replacing Ailing Sumner Redstone

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

On Wednesday, developments behind the scenes at CBS began to take shape when it was announced that ailing 92-year-old CBS Corporation chairman Sumner Redstone was stepping down from this position due to health concerns.  His replacement is CBS Chief executive, Les Moonves, who will assume the role of chairman.

According to the New York Times: “a lawsuit challenging Mr. Redstone’s mental competance raised questions among analysts and investors about whether Mr. Redstone should continue as executive chairman of CBS and Viacom. Mr. Redstone controls about 80 percent of the voting stock in the two companies.”

The shift at CBS came after Mr. Redstone sent a letter Tuesday to Mr. Moonves and CBS directors announcing his resignation, according to one person briefed on the developments who requested anonymity because they were private.

The board subsequently met Wednesday and first offered the chairman position to Mr. Redstone’s daughter, Shari. Ms. Redstone, who now is vice chairwoman of CBS and Viacom, declined and nominated Mr. Moonves for chairman of CBS corporation.. The board voted unanimously for the appointment.

“I have been fortunate to work with Les and he has clearly established himself as a creative and effective leader who understands both the challenges and the opportunities that are shaping today’s media landscape,” Ms. Redstone said in a statement. “I am sure he will make a great chair and I look forward to working with him for many years to come.”

Mr. Moonves, one of the most highly regarded TV executives, has been president and chief executive of CBS since 2006. He will continue in those positions.  “I want to thank  Sumner for his guidance and strong support over all these years,” Mr. Moonves said in a statement.

Mr. Redstone controls the voting stock in Viacom and CBS through his private holding company, National Amusements. If Mr. Redstone dies or is found to be incapacitated, his stake in National Amusements is to be held by a trust. Voting control will go to seven trustees. Those trustees include Ms. Redstone and Philippe P. Dauman, chief executive of Viacom.

In a separate statement, Ms. Redstone confirmed that the terms of her father’s trust state that she succeed him as nonexecutive chairwoman at both CBS and Viacom.  Separately, Ms. Redstone had made a deal with Mr. Moonves for him to take on the chairmanship at CBS, according to people briefed on the discussions.

Moonves is one of the nation’s highest paid executives. He saw $57.2 million in compensation in 2014, CBS reported in its proxy. His packages averaged $62.8 million a year in the five years that ended in 2014.  In late 2014, the company extended Moonves’ contract by two years to mid-2019. The agreement included incentives to keep him on board as a “Senior Advisor and/or Producer” for an additional five years after the term ended.

The new CBS chairman is married to The Talk and Big Brother host, Julie Chen.

So, what do you think about Les Moonves position with CBS? With this shift in power at the corporation of CBS, Moonves becomes even more powerful within the industry and more.

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  1. JustSaying says:

    Corporate politics as I see it.


    su0000 replied

    Without Corporate politics we wouldn’t have Y&R..
    It’s the way the game is played, and looks like CBS knows how to play it..


  2. elm51 says:

    80% of the voting block for viacom & cbs – now that is powerful!


  3. Mary SF says:

    One of the reasons networks do not have the budget for daytime is because they are paying these over the top salaries to their executives– I”m sorry unless you can cough up golden eggs or your tears are diamonds I just don’t see how one person warrants the kind of money corporations shell out to the few people on the top of their food chain


    Jim Preston replied

    Here Here I completely and wholeheartedly agree ~


    4ever DAYS replied

    That’s why the soaps die, Mary. A small fraction less pay to the big shots would be enough for the soaps to live long after all of us are dead and gone!

    He and the rest of them should choke on their filet mignon!!!


  4. Brett says:

    Looks like The Talk is safe anyway, sigh……


  5. 4ever DAYS says:

    Hey Y&R and B&B viewers, that’s the man who killed GL and ATWT in favor of ‘Let’s Make a Deal’ and his wife’s ‘The Talk.’

    Keep watching those replacement shows and soon there will be no more Y&R or B&B.

    The head honchos want more money and killing the soaps do the trick unless the alternative programs crumble!


    JANET replied

    I agree. I lost GL and ATWT so no matter what That is one channel I avoid. I wouldn’t watch the view if it was the only show on all of TV. Plus paying him all that money means the fans can’t have what they want. PBS does the same over pays the top women in their case, so they can cry We need sponser’s. When hell freezes over and the devil wears ice skates.


    jaybird369 replied

    4ever DAYS…as far as I’m concerned, the ‘head honchos’ on A-L-L 3 of the networks (ABC, CBS and NBC) don’t care about us soap viewers…or what we want!!!!! I feel that they only care about their own $$$ pockets. BEYOND SAD AND EVEN MORE DISGUSTING!!!!!


  6. Lauren says:

    Wow, what an inflated salary! I agree w/other comments in feeling that NOBODY deserves that type of salary when the network is floundering on money for the programs. Hopefully he gets rid of Jill! Faren Phillips and Angela McDonald!


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