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Executive Biographies

Lesli Rotenberg Lesli Rotenberg, Chief Programming Executive and General Manager, Children's Media & Education, PBS

Lesli small KIDS executives Lesli Rotenberg, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Children's Media and Education, PBS

As Chief Programming Executive and General Manager, Children's Media & Education, at PBS, Lesli Rotenberg is responsible for the strategic direction of a dynamic media service that supports the entire ecosystem in which children learn, including parents, teachers and the community, helping to prepare the next generation for success in school and in life.

With a focus on kindergarten readiness, Ms. Rotenberg leads a cross-disciplinary team charged with content production, digital development, multi-platform asset distribution, licensing, educational product creation and marketing and communications for PBS KIDS, the #1 children's educational media brand. Ms. Rotenberg has led the development and distribution of top-rated PBS KIDS media properties that help children ages 2-8 build science, literacy, math, critical thinking and social-emotional skills, among others.

Under Ms. Rotenberg’s leadership, PBS KIDS has extended its reach through mobile apps, over-the-top platforms and the launch of a PBS KIDS 24/7 channel and live stream, provided by local stations and available to more than 95% of US TV households. PBS KIDS also offers multiplatform parent resources to support children’s learning anytime and anywhere.

Ms. Rotenberg oversees PBS’ efforts to support and empower PreK-12th grade educators, helping improve learning outcomes for students across America. Ms. Rotenberg has positioned PBS and local member stations as key partners for teachers through content, community and professional learning resources tailored to their needs.

An educational media expert and frequent speaker on the topic, Ms. Rotenberg was named one of the nation’s top 15 “Women to Watch” by Advertising Age, and invited to participate in the prestigious FORTUNE Most Powerful Women in Business Forum. Ms. Rotenberg has received numerous honors, including six Emmy awards.

Linda Simensky Vice President, Children’s Programming, PBS

Linda small KIDS exec bio page

Linda Simensky, VP, Children’s Programming, PBS

As Vice President of Children’s Programming at PBS, Linda Simensky collaborates with producers, co-production partners, PBS station programmers, and distributors throughout the development, production, post-production, and broadcast phases for PBS KIDS programming. 

Linda’s efforts in transforming PBS KIDS’ lineup for preschool- and school-age children over the past several years have brought PBS to the forefront of the children’s media space. The American public rates PBS KIDS as the most trusted educational media brand for children, and PBS KIDS programs consistently rank highly with moms and preschoolers.  PBS KIDS also was named Channel of the Year in Kidscreen’s 2013 broadcasting awards.

Since joining PBS in 2003, Linda has worked with renowned producers to develop hit shows that now reach 77% of all kids ages 2-8 in the U.S. – from CURIOUS GEORGE and DINOSAUR TRAIN, to WILD KRATTS and ODD SQUAD.

Building on PBS KIDS’ mission to offer educational media content to kids across all platforms, Linda also works closely with PBS KIDS’ digital team to build a cross-platform media experience for kids across all PBS KIDS media properties.

Before joining PBS, Linda was Senior Vice President of Original Animation for Cartoon Network, where she oversaw development and series production of "The Powerpuff Girls," among others. She began her career working for nine years at Nickelodeon, where she helped build the animation department and launch the popular series "Rugrats," "Doug" and "The Ren & Stimpy Show."  Linda is a frequent speaker and writer on the topic of children’s programming; she has presented at numerous animation and television conferences and her work has appeared in several books on animation and children’s media. She recently taught a college course at the University of Pennsylvania on “Contemporary Issues in Animation.”

Sara DeWitt Vice President, PBS KIDS Digital

Sara small sq KIDS executives

Sara DeWitt, Vice President, PBS KIDS Digital

Over the last 18 years, Sara DeWitt has worked at the forefront of new digital platforms, in an effort to be everywhere kids are: from websites and mobiles apps to streaming video, augmented reality, 3D-rendered experiences, and wearable technologies. As VP of PBS KIDS Digital, she oversees the Kidscreen- and Webby-award winning pbskids.org website, PBS KIDS streaming video services, the PBS KIDS portfolio of educational apps for children, and the PBS KIDS for Parents digital experiences. Most recently, Sara led her team through the development of the PBS KIDS 24/7 digital live stream, an integral part of the new PBS KIDS 24/7 services launched in January of 2017. In 2014, she was named one of the top 42 Women Leading in Education by the USC Rossier School of Education, and was selected as one of the Top Women in Digital by Cynopsis Media in 2016 and 2017. Most recently, Sara gave a TED Talk about the potential media has to positively affect learning.

Before her career in public media, DeWitt worked as a preschool teacher, a management researcher, and studied media habits of children in rural areas of the United States. She holds a BA and an MA in English from Stanford University, and holds a certificate from the University’s Children, Society, and Public Policy curriculum. She is also a military spouse who has moved with her husband and two young sons four times in the last five years. They currently live in Alexandria, Virginia.

Media Contacts

Press Materials

  • PBS KIDS TO LAUNCH MOLLY OF DENALI, FIRST NATIONALLY DISTRIBUTED CHILDREN’S SERIES TO FEATURE ALASKA NATIVE LEAD CHARACTER

    Program Release
  • PBS KIDS ANNOUNCES LET’S GO LUNA!, PREMIERING NOVEMBER 21, 2018

    Program Release
  • PBS KIDS OFFERS SNEAK PEEK OF ITS FIRST SERIES DEDICATED TO THE ARTS AND CREATIVITY: PINKALICIOUS & PETERRIFIC

    Program Release
  • PBS KIDS Debuts New Movie From Family-Favorite Series ODD SQUAD This January

    Program Release
  • HALLOWEEN COMES TO PBS KIDS WITH NEW PROGRAMMING, GAMES AND ACTIVITIES FOR THE ENTIRE FAMILY

    Press Release
  • PBS KIDS AND CARSON-DELLOSA ANNOUNCE NEW LICENSING PARTNERSHIP

    Press Release
  • PBS KIDS ANNOUNCES THE RETURN OF FAN FAVORITE WITH NEW DIGITAL SERIES: THE RUFF RUFFMAN SHOW

    Press Release
  • PBS KIDS ANNOUNCES NEW SERIES LUNA AROUND THE WORLD, PREMIERING FALL 2018

    Press Release
  • PBS KIDS AND STATIONS BRIDGE THE SUMMER LEARNING GAP WITH ADVENTURE-FILLED SLATE OF NEW PROGRAMMING AND ACTIVITIES BEGINNING IN JUNE

    Press Release
  • PBS KIDS ANNOUNCES NEW SERIES PINKALICIOUS & PETERRIFIC, PREMIERING FEBRUARY 19, 2018

    Press Release
  • Twitch Announces Marathon of PBS KIDS’ Iconic Series Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood

    Press Release
  • PBS KIDS Family Night Program Descriptions

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