Barely a month since exiting Crown Media Holdings, former Hallmark Channel chief Henry Schleiff has found a new berth at Discovery Communications. Starting Aug. 1, Schleiff will serve as president and general manager of Investigation Discovery.
Reporting to Discovery Emerging Networks chief Clark Bunting, Schleiff, in a newly created position, will oversee program development, production, scheduling, research, marketing and revenue.
Schleiff, whose name was also floated as a possible chief for NBC Universal's Weather Channel, returns to the subject he knows best: legal drama. He made his mark at cable channel Court TV, where he was chairman and CEO. The channel was later rebranded truTV after Time Warner acquired full ownership (Court TV also counted Liberty Media as a stakeholder).
At Court, Schleiff instituted a primetime line-up of crime shows of every kind to get away from the channel's daytime courthouse coverage, its predominant image. After leaving, Schleiff joined Crown Media as head of the Hallmark Channel. He unexpectedly parted ways with the company when it was unable to find a buyer for its two services in a particularly tough deal market.
While running the operation, Schleiff beat the drum for increased ad spending on older viewers. His new target demo at Investigation Discovery is women 25-54, which might be an easier sell.