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Sumner Redstone Steps Down as CBS Executive Chairman

Moonves elevated to chairman of the company

CBS President and CEO Leslie Moonves has been elected the next chair of the CBS Board of Directors, the company announced in a press release today.

The news came in conjunction with the news that current Executive Chairman Sumner M. Redstone is stepping down to serve as chairman emeritus, effective Feb. 2.

Mr. Redstone’s resignation comes amid rumors of his ill health and a lawsuit alleging that his mental capacity being called into question.

Sumner’s daughter, Vice Chair of the CBS Board Shari E. Redstone, previously declined to fill her father’s position and subsequently nominated Moonves, who was unanimously confirmed.

Ms. Redstone will continue to serve as vice chair, a position she has held since 2005, in addition to serving as co-founder and managing partner of Advancit Capital, a venture capital firm that invests in early stage companies focusing on media, entertainment and technology. Ms. Redstone also serves as vice chair of Viacom, and as president of National Amusements Inc., the Redstone family investment vehicle.

“I want to thank Sumner for his guidance and strong support over all these years. It has meant the world to me,” said Moonves. “I am particularly grateful that Shari Redstone has agreed to continue in her role as vice chair of the company. Her business acumen and knowledge of the media space remain very important to me as we move forward, and I greatly appreciate her support and invaluable counsel. I would also like to thank our excellent board of directors, who have contributed so significantly to our success. The people of CBS have achieved much together and I believe the best is yet to come.”

Moonves joined CBS in 1995 after a career at Warner Bros. Television and Lorimar Television. He has held positions as president of CBS Entertainment, president and CEO of CBS Television and chairman of CBS Television. Moonves also became co-president and co-chief operating officer of Viacom and remained so until CBS’s separation from Viacom in 2006 when he became president and CEO of CBS Corp. CBS Corp. includes CBS Radio.