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WCNY Public Media hires Geiger as VP, COO

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — WCNY Public Media has announced the hiring of Chris Geiger to the “newly created role” of executive VP and COO, effective Tuesday.

In this role, Geiger will work with WCNY president and CEO Robert Daino on a “broad-based expansion” of the company. 

That will involve developing new revenue-generating “enterprises;” expanding program production to the national level; and working toward creating “a new, more entrepreneurial model” for nonprofit public broadcasting, WCNY said in a news release.

Geiger formerly served as president and CEO of the three local television stations branded as CNY Central. 

The CNY Central brand includes WSTM, an NBC affiliate; WSTQ, a CW affiliate; and WTVH, a CBS affiliate.

Geiger returns to Syracuse after working as an executive consultant to Videa, a division of Cox Media Group in Atlanta, Georgia and as VP and general manager at FOX Connecticut Media Group-WTIC in Hartford, Connecticut.

“I am extremely happy to be making this announcement and to have someone as talented as Chris joining our team” Daino said in the WCNY release. 

In the past several years, WCNY has taken “bold steps to diversify” its revenue streams, making it “less dependent” on government and soft-money funding while at the same time “increasing” its ability to serve its members and the community.

“As we enter a new phase of growth, it takes strong, experienced, and strategic leadership to drive expansion and lead our successful endeavors such as Enterprise America and 415 Productions as well as to continue the development of a robust national presence for our programs and documentaries. Chris’ combination of media-company management, digital-platform development, and contract negotiation skills are the perfect fit …plus he brings a keen understanding of our regional market that will allow him to make an immediate, positive impact to our organization and the communities we serve,” said Daino.

Geiger, a Binghamton–area native who now lives in Manlius, is a graduate of the University of Virginia and has spent his entire career in the broadcast television and digital industry. 

“WCNY has been transformed from a sleepy public TV station into a model for the public-broadcasting system, moving from an outdated building with aging technology into its new LEED-platinum certified, state-of-the-art facility that’s an anchor for Syracuse’s Near Westside Initiative. Together, we have set our sights on leveraging even more of WCNY’s strengths, of creating and delivering more content and services and charting new opportunities in the exponentially growing digital-media market,” Geiger said in the release.

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