Stephen Hill, president of programming at BET Networks, will be departing from the channel, where he has served for the past 18 years.
Connie Orlando, senior VP for specials, music programming and news, will be the interim head of programming for BET Networks.
According to a memo circulated by chair and CEO Debra Lee, Hill has “earned a reputation as one of the leading creative minds in television and music. His contributions to the team have been invaluable as we worked together to successfully reinvigorate our brand.”
“Most importantly, he has been a trusted colleague and friend to many of us. We are fortunate to have enjoyed his service, creativity and laughter for so many years. I can’t imagine this ride without his energy, passion and love of BET,” she added.
“Thank you Stephen for every awesome and magical moment, I know this won’t be our last dance. I know your dedication to BET will still live on in everyone you’ve touched over the years.”
About BET: Black Entertainment Television (BET) is an American basic cable and satellite television channel that is owned by the BET Networks division of Viacom.
The channel which was as founded in 1979 by Robert L. Johnson, has grown to become the most prominent television network targeting African American audiences. Under Johnson, the channel grew and in 1991, In 1991, BET became the first black-controlled TV company to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
In 2001, Viacom Inc., acquired the network, after Johnson sold his controlling stake of the company.