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Sesame Street Producer Ups Sherrie Westin

Sesame Street Producer Ups Sherrie Westin

Sesame Workshop has found its next CEO.

The non-profit that produces Sesame Street has named Sherrie Westin as its new chief executive. Westin will be only the second female CEO in the organization’s history, following Sesame Street creator Joan Ganz Cooney.

“Sesame Workshop’s mission is to help children everywhere grow smarter, stronger, and kinder — and no one has done more to advance that mission than Sherrie Westin, a seasoned leader with both proven experience and an unwavering dedication to uplifting the lives of children,” said Cooney in a statement. “I can think of no better person to lead Sesame Workshop as it addresses the most pressing needs of children and families around the world.”

Westin had been Sesame Workshop’s president since 2021, and was named interim CEO in February following the departure of Steve Youngwood. She joined Sesame Workshop in 1998, overseeing a number of the organization’s key initiatives.

The organization is in the middle of a pivotal moment of transformation. While it averted a strike with its writers earlier this year, the next 12 months will be critical. Sesame Street’s deal with HBO is coming up for renewal, so Sesame Workshop will need to either agree to terms on an extension, or find a new home for the program.

And Sesame Workshop is planning to “reimagine” Sesame Street beginning with season 56, which will debut in fall 2025. As The Hollywood Reporter exclusively detailed last October, the show will drop the magazine-style format in favor of two longer, narrative-driven segments, joined by a new animated segment Tales From 123.

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“After an extensive CEO search, the Sesame Workshop Board of Trustees unanimously selected Sherrie Westin, who has proven herself to be deeply knowledgeable, tireless in her efforts on behalf of children and families, and passionately committed to our mission,” said Gaby Sulzberger, chair of the Sesame Workshop board of trustees. “Sherrie is the inspirational leader the Workshop needs, and she has the Board’s absolute confidence and support as she accepts this role and leads us into the future.”

“Children are the most important investment we can make in our future. They are the reason Sesame Street was created 55 years ago, and why the need for our work is greater than ever,” added Westin. “Carrying on Joan Ganz Cooney’s legacy is both humbling and inspiring, and I’m honored to work with Gaby, the Trustees, and my colleagues to make sure that Sesame Street can continue to help children thrive for the next 55 years and beyond.”

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