Rob Sharenow was named President of Programming at A+E Networks® in July 2017. In his role, Sharenow is responsible for overseeing all content for A&E®, Lifetime®, HISTORY® and the entire A+E Networks® channel portfolio, streamlining the creative structure. Previously, he served as Executive Vice President and General Manager, A&E® and Lifetime® where he oversaw all strategic planning and activities for both networks, including programming, marketing, publicity and brand development.
He joined Lifetime® in March 2011 as its Executive Vice President of Programming before being elevated to Executive Vice President and General Manager of Lifetime® in June 2013. Under his leadership, the network enjoyed two consecutive years of record Emmy® nominations, culminating in 2014 with 17 nominations over eight separate programs. Lifetime® doubled its original content, growing its scripted offerings to include the Peabody Award-winning and Emmy® Award-nominated UnREAL®, the critically acclaimed Mary Kills PeopleTM and the upcoming series YOUTM and American PrincessTM. Lifetime®’s reality slate includes the Emmy®-nominated series Project Runway® and the hit docuseries Dance Moms®, The Rap GameTM, the Little Women® franchise and Bring It!, Lifetime®’s fastest-growing series ever.
With Lifetime® as a leader in long-form, the films Flowers in the Attic, Aaliyah: Princess of R&B, The Gabby Douglas Story, Petals on the Wind and Lizzie Borden Took an Ax ranked as 2014’s top five movie telecasts in cable among key demographics, while Whitney and Toni Braxton: Unbreak My Heart were ad-supported cable’s top original movies of 2015 and 2016, respectively. In 2017, Lifetime® had three of the top four movies in ad-supported cable with Beaches, Love by the 10th Date and Michael Jackson: Searching for Neverland. Sharenow is also leading the network’s expansion into features with Lifetime® Films’ The Last of Robin Hood, Lila and Eve and Paris Can Wait.
At A&E®, Sharenow is responsible for overseeing the network’s industry-leading slate of nonfiction programming that has been the cornerstone of the network’s success, including the Emmy® Award-winning series Born This WayTM and Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath, the number one unscripted crime series on cable Live PD®, 60 Days In®, Storage Wars®, Intervention® and The First 48®. Other hit series under Sharenow included Duck Dynasty® and Bates Motel, an A&E® original scripted drama series.
At HISTORY®, Sharenow is responsible for oversight of the #1 TV network in brand index, buzz and quality (YouGov Brand Index). HISTORY® has been the leader in factual programming the best historical drama series in cable, including the hit series VikingsTM, the military drama SIXTM and Knightfall®, the Knights Templar series from Executive Producer Jeremy Renner. Sharenow is now overseeing HISTORY®’s next original scripted series, Project Blue BookTM from Executive Producer Robert Zemeckis.
Before joining Lifetime®, Sharenow was Senior Vice President of Non-Fiction & Alternative Programming at A&E®, where he was responsible for supervising the development and creation of all of its nonfiction programming, including its signature real-life series, justice franchises, critically acclaimed documentary series, A&E IndieFilms®, lifestyle programming and marquee specials. During his tenure at A&E®, he developed and/or served as executive producer on several critically acclaimed and hit real-life series including Intervention®, Storage Wars®, HoardersTM, Beyond Scared Straight, Dog the Bounty Hunter®, Criss Angel Mindfreak®, Gene Simmons Family JewelsTM, The First 48®, ManhuntersTM and Growing Up Gotti. Under his leadership, A&E IndieFilms® produced and released several theatrical documentary features, including The September Issue, The Tillman Story and Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer.
Prior to joining A&E®, Sharenow served as Executive Producer of HISTORY®’s award-winning weekly series, This Week in History. While there, he also co-created and launched the series Extreme History with Roger Daltrey. In addition, he served as senior producer of a special commemorating the anniversary of 9/11, Relics from the Rubble. Additional television writing credits include Michael Moore’s Emmy® Award-winning TV Nation and the Emmy®Award-winning children’s series Where in Time Is Carmen Sandiego?
Also an accomplished author, Sharenow’s first novel, My Mother the Cheerleader, was named one of the Best Books of the Year by the American Library Association, School Library Journal and the New York Public Library. His second novel, The Berlin Boxing Club, won the Sydney Taylor Book Award and was a finalist for the Walden Award. His third book, The Girl in the Torch, was published by HarperCollins in 2015.
Sharenow is a graduate of Brandeis University. He received his master’s degree from New York University, where he held a fellowship in the American Studies department.