Jo Ann Ross, President and Chief Advertising Revenue Officer, ViacomCBS Domestic Advertising Sales, is responsible for overseeing the newly combined company’s sales efforts across all platforms. She reports to ViacomCBS Chief Executive Officer Bob Bakish and CBS Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Joe Ianniello.
Ross, the first woman to serve as sales chief of a broadcast network, is the longest-tenured sales head in broadcast television working in various sales roles at CBS over the last 27 years. She was promoted to her current role following the close of the merger between CBS Corporation and Viacom in December 2019.
Prior to joining ViacomCBS, Ross served as CBS’ President and Chief Advertising Revenue Officer since August 2017. In that role, she was responsible for overseeing CBS’ multiplatform advertising sales effort. Ross previously served as President, Network Sales, CBS Television Network since October 2002, responsible for overseeing all sales for CBS Entertainment, Sports, Daytime, News and Late Night.
Before being named president of the CBS sales division, Ross served as Executive Vice President of Sales (September 1998-2002), responsible for oversight of all sales for CBS’ primetime schedule. She also played a major role in creating new ways to sell Network programming, including reality, scripted, news and late-night genres. She joined CBS in 1992 as Vice President of Olympic Sales, in charge of Network sales for the Lillehammer Winter Olympics in 1994 and the Nagano Winter Olympics in 1998.
Prior to joining CBS, Ross was with the ABC Network for three years, where she sold daytime before being named a Prime Account Executive. Before that, Ross worked at the media buying firm Bozell, starting as an assistant buyer and working her way up to Senior Vice President, where she ran the network buying department.
In March 2019, Ross was named to Multichannel News’ Wonder Women Class of 2019 honoring female executives in the media industry. She received The Gracies Leadership Award from the Alliance of Women in Media in November 2018 and the IRTS’ Hall of Mentorship Award in September 2018. She was inducted into the DTC Hall of Fame in 2015 and Broadcasting & Cable’s Hall of Fame in 2013. For many years running, Ross has been one of The Hollywood Reporter’s “100 Most Powerful Women in Entertainment,” and she has been selected to the “AdWeek 50” list of the most indispensable executives behind the CEO from marketing, media and tech. Additionally, she was included on the list of power women in Variety’s 2018 Women’s Impact Report; she was named the Women in Sports and Entertainment “Woman of the Year” in 2005; and in September 2002, she was named one of Advertising Age’s “Media Mavens,” an annual compilation of the industry’s top media stars.
A cancer survivor, Ross has been a longtime supporter of MSKCC’s annual Cycle for Survival. She also serves on the board of directors of the John A. Reisenbach Foundation, The Ad Council, the International Radio and Television Society, the Video Advertising Bureau, and FourBlock, an organization with a mission to ensure that all veterans have the resources they need to transition to life and a new career when returning home.