The BBC Trust announced yesterday that Yorkshire-bred executive George Entwistle as the new Director-General of the BBC. Entwistle, a seasoned aficionado of the small screen was described by the Trust’s chairman Lord Patten as ‘a creative leader for a creative organisation’, and his work at the helm of projects such as Newsnight, The Culture Show and the online Bitesize revision facility would suggest Patten’s assertion is an assuredly valid one. He’ll be replacing outgoing Director-General Mark Thompson who announced his departure in March, sparking a corporate headhunt of Biblical proportions coordinated by recruitment firm Egon Zehnder. An intensive vetting process saw George Entwistle emerge as the candidate best suited to the Trust’s role specification.
Reflecting understandably contentedly on his appointment, Entwistle stated:
“I’m delighted that the Chairman and Trustees have decided I’m the right person for the job. And I’m very excited about all that lies ahead. I love the BBC and it’s a privilege to be asked to lead it into the next stage of its creative life.”
Judging by Entwistle’s prior work, it would seem reasonable to venture that the privilege belongs to the BBC too. He’s faced tough professional challenges before – he took control of flagship current affairs program Newsnight the day before the 9/11 terrorist attacks – and has proven his ability to surmount them. We wish him the best of luck over the coming years. The nation will be watching his every move after all…