Meet the newly named Viacom board members

Sumner Redstone, at left, and Shari Redstone at the LA Friendly House luncheon in 2012.
(Katy Winn/Invision for LA Friendly House/AP Images)

The ongoing Sumner Redstone corporate soap opera continued Thursday with the move by mogul and his daughter Shari to unseat five members of Viacom Inc.’s governing board.

Viacom Chairman and Chief Executive Philippe Dauman was among the board members who the Redstones want ousted, along with George S. Abrams, Blythe J. McGarvie, Frederic V. Salerno and William Schwartz. Salerno went to court in Delaware on Thursday to block the moves.

So, who might soon be overseeing the company? Here’s a snapshot of the newly-named Viacom directors:

Kenneth Lerer

Lerer is a managing partner at New York-based investment firm Lerer Hippeau Ventures, whose portfolio includes BuzzFeed, Chartbeat, and Warby Parker. He also serves as the chairman of Buzzfeed. Lerer previously served as the chairman and co-Founder of the Huffington Post. Lerer, in 2013, launched, a pro-gun control website. He has a 4% stake in the New York Mets.


When asked by the New York Times Magazine about his thoughts on old media, Lerer said:

“You have to protect the current brand, but you need to go all in more,” he said in the 2013 interview. “I have a 31-year-old and a 28-year-old, and neither of them have picked up a print magazine in I don’t know how many years. And they don’t watch NBC, CBS, ABC, MSNBC or Fox. Those brands are somewhat meaningless to them and their peers.”

Thomas May

In this 2015 photo, Tom May, then-president and CEO of Eversource Energy, take questions at the annual Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers in St. John's, Newfoundland,.
In this 2015 photo, Tom May, then-president and CEO of Eversource Energy, take questions at the annual Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers in St. John’s, Newfoundland,.
(Paul Daly/The Canadian Press via AP )

May, 68, is chairman of Eversource Energy, the electricity and gas giant that is headquartered in Hartford and Boston. He recently stepped down down as chief executive of of the company. May is an accountant by training — he received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Stonehill College, where he now is the chair of the Board of Trustees, and a M.S. in Finance from Bentley College. He is also a graduate of the Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program. He has served as a director of Bank of America Corp. since 2004 and a director of Liberty Mutual Holding Co., Inc. since 2002.

Judith McHale

McHale is the president and chief executive officer of Cane Investments. From 1996-2005 she served as president and chief operating officer of Discovery Communications. Working Mother magazine, in 2004, named the company one of the best for working mothers for promoting a work culture that “helps people stay focused and manage their lives.” From 2009 to 2011, she served as the Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs for the U.S. Department of State. The New York native is a graduate of University of Nottingham (U.K.) and Fordham University Law School (New York). Her early career included time as general counsel for MTV Networks, where she was responsible for legal affairs for MTV, Nickelodeon and VH-1.

Ronald L. Nelson

Nelson is executive chairman of car rental service Avis Budget Group, Inc. Nelson is also a former co-chief operating officer of DreamWorks SKG, where he served a pivotal role in getting the company off the ground by helping to raise $5 billion in capital necessary for its launch. He has also served as executive vice president and chief financial officer at Paramount Communications Inc., formerly Gulf & Western Industries, Inc.

Nicole Seligman

Seligman, until March, served as the president of Sony Entertainment Inc., where she oversaw finance, human resources, legal and corporate communications. Seligman, who had been at Sony for 15 years, helped see the company through the crisis after its email system was hacked in 2014. Prior to her time in the entertainment sector, Seligman’s legal resume drew attention. She served she served as counsel for Lt. Col. Oliver North during the Iran-Contra hearings in the 1980s and acted as the legal adviser to President Bill Clinton when he testified before a grand jury in the Monica Lewinsky scandal.

Twitter: @villarrealy