When Roseanne Barr sent a racist tweet comparing a former Obama advisor to an ape on Tuesday, the repercussions were swift. The star apologized, her ABC show got the ax and it was all thanks to Channing Dungey, the first Black president of a major broadcast network.
“Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,” she said in a statement that reverberated through Hollywood.
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) May 29, 2018
Dungey started her career with the Disney owned station in 2009 and helped bring shows like Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and Quantico on the air.
She became president of the network in 2016 after serving as executive vice president of drama and oversees “all development, programming, marketing and scheduling operations for ABC prime time and late-night,” according to her bio.
Dungey, a 2017 EBONY Power 100 Power Player, started as a development assistant at Davis Entertainment for 20th Century Fox and moved on to Steamroller Productions and Warner Bros. as a production executive, according to Black Enterprise.
The UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television graduate said she’s always been drawn to TV and describes herself as a huge fan of TV, so her role as president of ABC Entertainment seems fitting.
“I’ve been a TV junkie for a long time, since I was a kid,” she told UCLA Newsroom in February 2017. “I love to read, and TV seemed more like a good book, with these incredible series unfolding like chapters in a novel.”