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Major management shuffle at CanWest

Winnipeg, - CanWest Global Communications announced major changes in its executive suites Tuesday, including the departure of Gerry Noble, chief executive of the Global Television Network, and the retirement of Don Babick, president of CanWest Publications Inc.

Chief executive Leonard Asper also announced that chief operating officer Rick Camilleri will take on direct responsibility for executive management of CanWest's Canadian television, newspaper, interactive and other media operations.

CanWest (TSX:CGS.S, CGS.A) is Canada's largest newspaper publisher and second-biggest private broadcaster.

Asper also announced the appointments of Bob Calvert as senior vice-president of operations and John Burgis as executive vice-president for business services and finance in the company's Canadian media operations.

Babick, a 40-year veteran of Southam and CanWest, will retire April 30 and Noble, with CanWest for 18 years, plans to leave when his contract expires Aug. 31.

``While Don has been with CanWest for only two years, his leadership throughout that period, during which the consolidation of our print and broadcast businesses was at its most fragile stage, was crucial,'' Asper said in a release.

``His experience in the newspaper industry will be missed,''

Noble began his career at Global TV in Toronto in 1985 and has managed TV operations for the company in New Zealand, Australia and Canada before becoming president of the Global TV network in 2000.

``Gerry has made a tremendous contribution to the company over the years as one of a small group of CanWest executives who were instrumental in building the company into the major international media company it has become over the past decade."

CanWest owns the National Post, a Toronto-based national newspaper, plus Southam dailies from Vancouver to Montreal and the Global TV network, the second-biggest private broadcaster behind CTV Inc.

The company also has broadcasting and other assets in New Zealand, Australia, Ireland and the United Kingdom, as well as program production and distribution division.

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