President, Entertainment, The CW
Dawn Ostroff was named President, Entertainment, The CW on January 24, 2006,
spearheading all creative efforts of the network and overseeing such areas as current
programming, series development, scheduling, research, marketing and publicity.
A joint venture between Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corporation, The
CW debuted on Sept. 20, 2006 as America’s new fifth broadcast network. Along with
COO John Maatta, Ostroff oversaw the formation and launch of The CW. With the
network targeting young women with high-quality programming, Ostroff continues to
guide The CW’s primetime slate, which features the hit series “The Vampire Diaries,”
“Gossip Girl,” “America’s Next Top Model,” “One Tree Hill,” “Life Unexpected,”
“90210,” “Supernatural” and “Smallville,” as well as the highly anticipated new series
“Nikita,” starring Maggie Q, and “Hellcats,” starring Aly Michalka and Ashley Tisdale.
Prior to The CW, Ostroff served as President, UPN, a position she held since
February 2005. Ostroff joined UPN as President, Entertainment on February 11, 2002.
During her tenure at UPN, Ostroff was instrumental in creating and defining
UPN’s brand identity targeting adults 18-to-34 years old with a focus on young urban
women. She brought several A-list talent to produce and star in projects for UPN,
including Chris Rock, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, Tyra Banks and Joel Silver, to
name a few.
Ostroff was recently named to Elle magazine’s “Women in Hollywood: Power
List.” Ostroff has also been listed among the 100 most powerful women in entertainment
by The Hollywood Reporter for eight consecutive years (Dec. 2002-Dec. 2009). For two
consecutive years, Entertainment Weekly ranked Ostroff among Hollywood's top
executives in their annual "Power List" issue. In addition, Electronic Media (now
Television Week) named her one of the year's 12 to Watch (Jan. 2003) as well as one of
the most powerful women in television (Oct. 2002).
Before UPN, Ostroff served as Executive Vice President, Entertainment at
Lifetime Television since August 1999, overseeing all programming and production,
scheduling and acquisitions, including Lifetime's original movies, primetime series,
specials, documentaries and sports, as well as all programming for the Lifetime Movie
Network and Lifetime Real Women.
Under her stewardship, Lifetime rose from the sixth highest-rated network in
cable to the number one cable network in prime time, building its reputation as a dynamic
outlet for Hollywood's most talented women in front of and behind the camera. During
Ostroff's tenure, Lifetime's line-up boasted the top three original dramas on basic cable,
including “Strong Medicine,” “Any Day Now” and “The Division,” as well as the highly
successful “Intimate Portrait” series, which profiled the world's most fascinating women.
Dawn Ostroff Bio ─ Page 2
While at Lifetime, Ostroff was named one of the top 50 women in entertainment
by The Hollywood Reporter. In 1999, she was honored by American Women in Radio &
Television (AWRT) with the Star Award for her extraordinary commitment to the issues
and concerns of women through Lifetime's programming and public service efforts. She
was also celebrated by the New York chapter of Women in Cable & Telecommunication
and Cablevision Magazine as a “Wonder Women of Cable,” recognizing her as one the
most powerful women in cable for 2001. That same year, she was listed for the first time
in Cablefax Magazine's Top 100 in the cable industry. Ostroff joined Lifetime in
October 1996 as Senior Vice President, Programming and Production.
Prior to Lifetime Television, Ostroff worked at 20th Century Fox Television as
Senior Vice President, Creative Affairs, where she was involved in the development of
comedy and drama series for the 1996-97 season, including “King of the Hill” for FOX,
“Buffy the Vampire Slayer” for The WB and the Emmy Award-winning “The Practice”
Prior to 20th Century Fox Television, Ostroff was President of Michael Jacobs
Productions, where she produced and supervised the production of comedies such as
“Boy Meets World” and “Dinosaurs” for ABC and “The Torkelsons” for NBC. From
1984 to 1989, Ostroff served as Vice President, Development, at the Kushner-Locke
Company, developing and producing a number of series for HBO, as well as several
mini-series and television movies for all of the broadcast networks.
She received her Bachelor of Science degree in journalism from Florida
International University. She began her career in news as a reporter for WINZ, a CBS
affiliate in Miami. She also worked in local news at WPLG and WTVJ in Miami.
Ostroff lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Mark, and at home, she takes on
her favorite role of mom to her four children.