Michael Riley, who has spent the last two years running The Walt Disney Company syndicated Radio Disney division, will take over as president of ABC Family, the company said Monday afternoon. Riley succeeds Paul Lee, who left last month to take over ABC. The decision continued the Walt Disney Company’s streak of surprise hires, last year, it hired a television executive to run its movie studio. It also promoted a little-known TV manager from Latin America to run the Disney Channel and it’s chief financial officer switched jobs with the company’s theme park chairman. The move is unusual considering Riley’s limited experience in original programming, the primary function of his new job. He does however, have TV on his résumé. Before joining Disney, Riley worked for the Turner Broadcasting System in Europe.
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