Today is Isaac Lee’s last day at Univision Communications, Inc.
The company announced Lee has decided to step down as Chief Content Officer – a role created for him in January 2017 to oversee content development and production efforts for both Univision and Televisa, shortly after the FCC approved an increase of the Mexican media giant’s ownership of the U.S. Spanish-language network.
Lee is not being replaced. A company spokesperson says Jessica Rodriguez, President and COO of Univision Networks, will continue in her role overseeing entertainment content for the network, working closely with Patricio Wills, who was named President of Televisa Studios in March.
Rumors of his impending departure had be swirling for months, and increased after Univision’s failed attempts at an IPO, CEO Randy Falco’s early retirement, the ouster of several of his close lieutenants from top management positions, including Fusion Media Group’s CEO Felipe Holguín and Fusion President and Chief Content Officer Daniel Eilemberg, and the company’s decision to put Gizmodo Media and The Onion digital properties for sale – assets he was instrumental in acquiring.
Lee joined Univision in December 2010 as President of News, quickly making management and structural changes within the department. He went on to expand his reach in other divisions, and was the driving force behind the creation of Fusion, of which he was named CEO in 2013.
Univision kept expanding his role and increasing his power with added titles, including UCI President of News & Digital and Fusion CEO in 2015, adding oversight of the company’s Multicultural and Music division later that year.
In 2016, Univision extended his responsibilities to the entertainment division, naming him Chief News, Entertainment and Digital Officer, until his most recent role overseeing content for UCI and Televisa, where he initiated a global pilot season in Spanish-language television for Mexico and the U.S., opening the doors to 55 independent third-party producers to pitch projects, some of which are already in production.
Lee is credited for creating Los Angeles-based Story House Entertainment, a content development and production hub that produces scripted and non-scripted programming in English and Spanish, including three seasons of the popular series “El Chapo,” co-produced with Netflix, as well as a series of documentaries including “Hate Rising,” “Residente,” and “Outpost.”
Lee will start his own production company developing “diverse relevant, independent content that will appeal to diverse audiences globally.” He says he’s looking to partner with the best production companies and will be launching his new venture within the next 90 days.
* Story was updated to include who will be taking over Lee’s duties.