A conservative filmmaker has been tapped to the lead the broadcasting arm of the U.S. government.
Michael Pack has been named by President Donald Trump to be the chief executive officer of the Broadcasting Board of Governors for a term of three years.
Pack has been called a close ally of former White House strategist Steve Bannon, according to the website ForeignPolicy.com, and has been a sharp critic of what he calls the “politically correct agenda” at universities around the country.
According to a release by the White House, Pack is the current president of Manifold Productions, where he has written, directed and produced broadcast documentaries and educational films. He has also been president and CEO of the Claremont Institute, a conservative thinktank; senior vice president for television programming and co-chair of the international TV council at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; and the member of the National Council on the Humanities.
The BBG is a $685 million agency that oversees news networks like Office of Cuba Broadcasting, Radio Free Asia, Voice of America and Middle East Broadcasting Networks. These government-funded outlets create and distribute news in more than 100 countries and 61 languages and reach an audience of 278 million people.
Earlier this year, the BBG released its 2018–2022 Strategic Plan, a roadmap for moving the agency forward over the next five years, including significantly increasing its audience reach.
Pack’s confirmation will now head to the Senate for approval.
Pack has worked on two documentaries with Bannon. In an article he wrote last year, Pack said liberals had a “politically correct stranglehold” over film schools, the ForeignPolicy.com site said.
Critics have raised alarm bells over the proposed appointment, with some saying Trump could turn the Broadcasting Board of Governors into his own personal propaganda machine. Other experts dismiss that charge since the CEO has no editorial oversight over the organization.