ABC Family Names New Head of Development In Quest to Skew to Older, 20-Something Audience

Karey Burke, ABC Entertainment, Freeform, 20th Television
Craig Sjodin/ABC
ABC Family
ABC Family/Craig Sjodin
Disney/ABC Television Group
Disney/ABC Television Group

Get ready to see some changes at ABC Family, the network that brings you “Baby Daddy,” “Pretty Little Liars,” “The Fosters,” “Melissa and Joey,” “Switched at Birth,” “Twisted,” “Young & Hungry” and more: The cable network has just named former NBC exec Karey Burke as the exec vp programming and development.

Replacing Kate Juergens, Burke — a development veteran — will report to ABC Family president Tom Ascheim and will be charged with accelerating and amplifying the network’s original content on both the scripted and unscripted sides, according to an official press release. She’ll also head development and current original programming, in addition to casting and creating a cohesive programming strategy.

“Karey is a proven hit maker, has worked across all genres of television and successfully held different roles as a buyer, seller and producer,” says Ascheim. “She is a dynamic leader with a vision for our programming that will result in more stand-out, must-commit, must-share content. In collaboration with the programming team, she will continue to grow the slate of successful series and build an environment for creativity to flourish. We are thrilled to have her lead our creative vision.”

Adds Burke, who has overseen Emmy-winning series including “Friends,” “The Westwing,” “Will & Grace,” and “ER:” “I admire what ABC Family has accomplished and am honored to be a part of growing its future. I have a house full of ABC Family viewers and am keenly aware of what the network does right. I’m inspired to be a part of growing the next wave of appointment viewing.”

Ascheim, who joined ABC Family late last year, has gone on record saying that he hopes to bring the network from one that caters to family and kids to one that caters to 20-something young adult viewers.