Deborah Barak Dies: Former Top CBS Business Executive Was 65

Deborah Barak Dies: Former Top CBS Business Executive Was 65

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Deborah Barrack, one of the most popular, influential and popular television presenters of the past three decades, died today, January 21, after a long battle with cancer. He is 65 years old.

It's been two years since Barrack left CBS at the end of 2020. During his 35 years with the company, as President of Business Operations, he created negotiation templates and implemented business models that have become industry standards. An experienced negotiator respected by his peers, Barrack – known to all as Debbie – has led high-profile network and studio negotiations. He brings great talent and makes deals in the most chaotic situations while keeping cool under pressure.

Behind his steely, humble and shy exterior, Barack has a great sense of humor. He has also been a great mentor to many industry professionals who are carrying on his legacy today.

"Debbie has been a great mentor and friend to many of us at CBS," said David Stapf, president of CBS Studios and Bark's colleague and longtime friend. “He's the one everyone looks to for advice and guidance, both professionally and personally. They always leave the office a little smarter and emotionally stronger. There has never been anyone more loved, admired and respected at CBS and in our business as a whole.

"Debbie is a rare person who is part scary, very smart and very compassionate," Stepf added. He is my partner, my best friend and what makes me a better person.

During his time at CBS, Barrack developed the business framework for the network to create an in-house production division and oversee the studio's work on original series, CBS' current production of the documentary series Rescue 911 , and the emotional drama Angel , while also rebranding CBS. Studios with 75 episodes.

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In addition to his role in the program's initial entry into CBS ownership, Barak helped develop the business plan and lead negotiations to transition CBS' late-night properties from lease to full ownership. He negotiated talent and production deals for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and The Late Show with James Corden .

Barracks helped create CBS' original summer series business model through the network's low licensing fees and SVOD time slot. It has been used for series such as The Dome Under, Extant, Zoo and BrainDead. He also created the royal family structure for CBS All Access original series such as Star Trek: Discovery.

Barack has managed license renewals for network series, including long-term renewals for specialty franchises such as The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men and The Late Show with David Letterman , as well as the Grammy Awards. , Kennedy Center Honors and Academy of Country Music Awards. In 2000, he developed the Survivor record deal, which became the model for the true talent contract. Most recently, Barack negotiated the acquisition of CBS's stake in Capital Entertainment and a long-term distribution and co-production deal with Imagine Entertainment. He represented CBS on the CW board and oversaw Paramount+'s previous CBS All Access deal.

"He was respected and admired across the media spectrum. He was wise, forceful and fair to all. His business acumen and subtle negotiating skills were matched by his humanity and grace," said producer Nina Tassler, former programming director and former president of CBS. during his tenure in the entertainment industry. Working with him for over 20 years has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. Her great intelligence, coupled with her deep appreciation for artists, has earned Debbie world-class fame.

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"As an advisor and friend to many, DB is essential to the network's success," he continued. Above all, his moral compass is treating everyone with grace and dignity.

Barak joined CBS in 1985 as Broadcast Advisor for the station's West Coast Legal Department. He was promoted to SVP, Business Planning and Special Projects and played a key role in negotiating new media deals and partnership agreements. SVP, Corporate Affairs, CBS Entertainment; EVP, Business Affairs, CBS Network Television Entertainment Group; EVP, Operations, CBS Network Television Entertainment Group; And finally, in 2015, he was appointed President of Business Operations.

When Barack announced his retirement at the end of January 2020, he wanted to start a new chapter in his career and focus on non-profit organizations, an area in which he was heavily involved. His services include serving as head of the Adt Ariel School, Unistream and the Israel Policy Forum, among others. Barack is also open to other opportunities, including serving on the board and planning to spend time with his grandchildren.

An epidemic cut short his last year at CBS, and his illness destroyed many plans for the future.

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