Who is the BBC’s new director general?

Tony Hall has been announced as the new director general of the BBC. But who is he, and what is he likely to bring to the corporation? Media Digest has a run down of the new man in charge.

Antony William Hall, Baron Hall of Birkenhead (3 March 1951), 61, was educated at King Edward’s School in Edgbaston and Birkenhead on Merseyside. Lord Hall went on to study philosophy, politics and economics (PPE) at Keble College, Oxford.

  • In 1973 Lord Hall worked as a trainee at the BBC in the Belfast newsroom, and went on to produce Today, The World at One, The World Tonight and PM on Radio Four.
  • Editor of the Nine O’clock News on BBC One at the age of 34, and went on to supervise the BBC’s coverage of the 1987 election.
  • In 1981, he published King Coal a record of the National Union of Mineworkers, and in 1987 he published Nuclear Politics, a history of nuclear power in Britain.
  • In 1993 he took up the position of editor of television news and current affairs, during which time he launched the BBC’s televised coverage of Parliament.
  • Director, then chief executive, of BBC News and current affairs until 2001.
  • Launched Radio 5 live, BBC News 24, BBC News Online and BBC Parliament, all tenors of the corporation’s output.
  • In April 2001 he became chief executive of the Royal Opera House widening its access through a low-price ticket scheme and the purchase of a DVD company, Opus Arte, to distribute recordings globally.
  • Lord Hall was made a CBE in 2005, and has sat on the board of the British Council since 2008.
  •  In 2007 he chaired a review for Channel 4 over its handling of Celebrity Big Brother and the race row involving Jade Goody and Shilpa Shetty.
  • In March 2010 Hall became a life peer with the title Baron Hall of Birkenhead (county of Cheshire), and was introduced to the House of Lords as a crossbencher.

Lord Patten, head of the BBC Trust,  said: “I believe the approach we have taken is ultimately in the interests of the BBC and, most importantly, license fee-payers as we have got the best candidate and he will help the organisation quickly get back on an even keel.”

Lord Hall will take up the post next March when Tim Davie will step down as acting director-general.

(Source: The Guardian)

Image: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

 

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