Veteran TV public relations executive Richard Licata is exiting the NBC broadcast network, where he served as head of communications and publicity.
The move, announced Tuesday, was surprising because NBC Entertainment Chairman Bob Greenblatt had recruited his trusted advisor, Licata, three years ago as one of the first major hires of his NBC executive team.
Greenblatt and Licata had worked together for more than two decades, first at Fox Broadcasting and then at Showtime, where Licata was in charge of entertainment communications.
“When I asked Rich to come over from Showtime a few years ago, he was excited about the challenge of helping to rebuild NBC,” Greenblatt said in an email to NBC staff. “I’ll always give him credit for being one of the key components of making that happen."
Licata will remain at NBC through early December to help launch NBC’s live production of “Peter Pan."
Licata, in a separate email to his staff, attributed his departure to reflection after the death of his father over the summer. Licata said he planned to “pause for a moment and find something to rebuild again.”
NBC did not say whether Licata would be replaced.
NBC veterans Rebecca Marks and Nate Kirtman are expected to pick up increased duties overseeing communications at the network.