(February 4, 2011, New York, NY) -- Thomas Hjelm, an experienced digital executive, has been named Vice President and Chief Digital Officer, announced Laura Walker, President and CEO of New York Public Radio (NYPR) today. NYPR is the largest public radio franchise in the country, comprising WNYC, WQXR and The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space, reaching approximately five million consumers on-air and online per month.
In this newly created role, Hjelm will lead NYPR’s vigorous investment in the digital space. He will be responsible for overseeing digital business development; product development (including mobile distribution and social media tools); product design; user experience; web/mobile analytics and research; digital technology and systems administration. Additionally, Hjelm will work in close partnership with the editorial content areas of all three NYPR brands; with its development and underwriting departments on digital revenue opportunities; and with the marketing team on digital brand extension. He will report to Walker.
“With our rapid expansion and addition of the WQXR and The Greene Space brands over the last several years, New York Public Radio is poised to make a significant investment in our digital content and distribution,” said Walker. “Tom brings the right creative, operational and business experience, as well as incredible passion and energy, to expand our digital presence, particularly in mobile applications and social media. I’m delighted to welcome him to the NYPR team, and I’m confident he’ll be a strong leader as we forge a vibrant new vision for our digital strategy and presence.”
“The mission of New York Public Radio is uniquely suited to the possibilities of digital media,” said Hjelm. “The quality, range and relevance of our content, combined with the engagement and loyalty of our audience, invite a host of opportunities for smart innovation across new and evolving platforms. I’m thrilled to be joining the NYPR team, and to work with them and our audience to extend that digital reach.”
Hjelm brings 15 years of experience leading digital strategy and operations, content and product development and marketing with NBC, AOL and three venture-backed media startups whose products range from digital film to location-based social-networking applications. Most recently, Hjelm served as Senior Director of Content Strategy and Business Operations for NBC Local Integrated Media. He had direct oversight of operations, content and product strategy and partner management across a network of local news-and-lifestyle websites in 10 major U.S. markets, and later co-managed the reorganization of the division’s digital operations and relaunch of its online services in 2008.
Prior to joining NBC Local, Hjelm spent three years at AOL, where he was a strategic consultant for AOL Television, Director of Broadband Services for the AOL for Broadband premium service, and Creative Director overseeing major marketing campaigns in support of the 2005 relaunches of AOL.com and the AIM instant-messaging service.
From 1995 to 2000, Hjelm was Writer, Producer and later Senior Director and Executive Producer of NBC.com. Supervising teams in Burbank and New York, he led all creative development and operations for an online network of original content produced in conjunction with such shows as Homicide: Life on the Street, Late Night With Conan O’Brien, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, Saturday Night Live, The Pretender and Profiler.
Hjelm also served as Vice President of Product and Strategy of Flixer, a Hollywood-based digital film studio and marketing services company; as Executive Producer of LivePlanet, a startup founded by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck to engage young talent and produce convergent content for online, on-air and film; and as a consultant with Sponto, an early-stage startup which is currently developing a location-based social-networking application.
Hjelm received an M.F.A. in Film Production from the USC School of Cinema-Television and a B.A. in English Literature from Swarthmore College.
New York Public Radio is New York's premier public radio franchise, comprising WNYC, WQXR, and The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space, as well as www.wnyc.org, www.wqxr.org and www.thegreenespace.org. As America's most listened-to AM/FM news and talk public radio stations, reaching 1.1 million listeners every week, WNYC extends New York City's cultural riches to the entire country on-air and online, and presents the best national offerings from networks National Public Radio, Public Radio International, American Public Media, and the British Broadcasting Company. WNYC 93.9 FM broadcasts a wide range of daily news, talk, cultural and music programming, while WNYC AM 820 maintains a stronger focus on breaking news and international news reporting. Classical 105.9 FM WQXR is New York City's sole 24-hour classical music station, presenting new and landmark classical recordings as well as live concerts from the Metropolitan Opera, the New York Philharmonic, among other New York City venues, immersing listeners in the city's rich musical life. In addition to its audio content, WNYC and WQXR produce content for live, radio and web audiences from The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space, the stations’ street-level multipurpose, multiplatform broadcast studio and performance space. For more information about New York Public Radio, visit www.nypublicradio.org.