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|Also Known As:||Margaret Loesch Stimpson||Died:|
|Born:||Cause of Death:|
|Birth Place:||Profession:||Producer ... executive|
Few have dominated children's programming during the past 25 years as much as Margaret Loesch, who, as an executive with ABC, NBC, Hanna-Barbera, Marvel Productions and, finally, as founding president of the Fox Children's Network, has developed and/or supervised more than 100 live-action and animated series and specials. In July 1997, Loesch was appointed vice chair of Fox Kids Worldwide, to be in charge of the Fox Kids Network, Saban Entertainment and International Family Entertainment, acquired by News Corporation earlier in the year. Loesch was given the responsibility of developing long-term strategy and opportunities for Fox Kids Worldwide.
Prior to the new appointment, Loesch was responsible not just for the Fox Network--which was the highest-rated children's programming block in broadcasting--but also for the Fox Kids Club, the Fox magazines for kids and the weekly radio program, Fox Kids Countdown. She began her career in TV at ABC in 1971, working her way up through a succession of program-related positions until 1974, when she bolted to NBC to supervise the Saturday morning line-up of children's programming. Loesch left NBC to join Hanna-Barbera as vice president of children's programming in 1979 where she took hold of a property called "The Smurfs", that would become the hottest kids ticket of the early 80s and put NBC in the Saturday morning driver's seat. In 1984, she accepted the position of president and CEO of Marvel Productions, where she was responsible for the execution of such programs as "Jim Henson's Muppet Babies", "Dungeons and Dragons", "GI Joe" and "Jim Henson's Fraggle Rock" and shared in four Emmy awards for her efforts.
It was a surprise to few in the animation and kids programming world when Loesch was named by Fox to create a network for the ages 2-12 demographic in 1990. She developed the Fox Network as a service for the affiliates providing both weekday and Saturday morning programming. Among the efforts was the "Batman" animated franchise. Loesch has also expanded the Fox Network to Latin America and Australia.
Following the merger of Fox Kids Network with Saban in November 1997, Loesch resigned her post. In February 1998, it was announced that she had accepted the position of president of the newly created Jim Henson TV Group, with responsibilities to head worldwide TV operations and with the mandate to create a new general entertainment cable channel. Soon after the network relaunch under the name Hallmark Channel, Loesch resigned because she "achieved all of my goals, and now I'm exhausted" and she hoped to spend more time with her family.
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