Raymond J Brune has hit shows in nearly every daypart. From early morning to prime time, Ray has built a career on producing personalities. Some of the most famous faces on the air, on the web and streaming in the palm of your hand were discovered and/or mentored by Ray. As an Executive Producer for local, cable and network morning shows, he’s produced more than 15,000 hours of personality-driven, “live” TV from the control room…and counting. As CEO of his own production company, he’s created prime time docu-dramas, court and game shows that are airing & streaming in syndication around the globe.
Ray has been called the “Father of Los Angeles morning TV” by longtime L.A. anchorman Carlos Amezcua. His expertise and success in morning TV is unparalleled. Most recently, Ray was recruited to create and EP Eye Opener, the national morning show for the Tribune station group. The show premiered in May of 2011 and in just 10 weeks on the air in its Houston test market, beat the local and national competition in the 18-35 & 18-49 demo. In 2014, he was recruited back to Eye Opener to fix it after losing its way. In just six months he added 50% more viewers to the show.
On the network level, Ray was hired by legendary news pioneer Roone Arledge to Executive Produce Good Morning America/Sunday. There, he used ESPN reporter Robin Roberts to fill-in as guest host. We all know how that turned out. Ray began his tenure at ABC as Executive Producer of World News Now, the network’s top-rated overnight news broadcast. He was the first to produce Anderson Cooper in a network anchor chair. And we also know how that turned out. While at ABC, Ray EP’d the network’s #1-rated global coverage of the year’s biggest breaking story, Princess Diana’s funeral.
Ray first woke up Los Angeles with his irreverent approach to morning television – the KTLA Morning News. With its mix of news, off-beat celebrity interviews, and casual conversation, the two-hour program (later expanded to four hours) was consistently #1-rated for 14 consecutive sweeps under Ray’s watch. His format for the show was, according to Tribune executive John Reardon, “the most copied and imitated format of any show in the history of television.” And the show was the highest-rated local morning program -ever-.
As Vice President & Executive Producer of E! Network‘s global news division, Ray launched the network’s flagship news franchise E! News Live and grew the highly-desirable adult 18-49 demo by a whopping 100%, its women 18-34 demo by 86%. He discovered Giuliana Rancic who would become the face of the network. Ray also added the highly-rated E! News Weekend to feed the insatiable appetite for entertainment news. E! News Live is seen in 300 countries around the world in 17 languages.
But Ray’s news chops are only part of his story. He remains on the bleeding edge of broadcasting with a string of successful reality, court and game shows. Partnering with the legendary Merv Griffin, Ray created and EP’d two seasons of Lisa Williams: Life Among The Dead on Lifetime. He created the tense court docu-drama Second Verdict, which aired a full season on PAX, and he convinced Merv to finally finish developing the sister game show to Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, Merv Griffin’s Crosswords, which launched 225 episodes into syndication and spawned ancillary products including video games, board games and books. He’s sold the female MMA show Knockouts to VH1, Guardian Angel to ABC, and Dream Horse to CBS. He’s EP’d Restless Josie, a female extreme sports show for TuffTV, and James & Sunda, the #1 prime time comedy series on the JLTV network which is seen in 116 countries around the world.
Ray’s role as Vice President and General Manager of the Fox-produced TVG Network brought television into the new millennium. The 24-hour, international horse racing network, headquartered in Los Angeles combined state-of-the-art digital technology with interactive wagering from home via broadband cable. This first truly interactive TV network was a joint venture between Fox, AT&T and Gemstar/TV Guide International. By its third year, TVG became the highest-valued cable network in history to that point, according to SNL Kagan, assessed at a staggering $3 (b)billion.
During his career, Ray picked up four Emmy Awards, eight Emmy nominations, a Peabody award for KTLA’s continuing coverage of Rodney King, three Best Newscast awards from the Associated Press, three Golden Mike Nominations, and a Prism for an E! News special.
Ray is an avid writer. He’s published two books on his TV news experience. In 2016 he was invited by Arianna Huffington herself to become a contributor to the Huffington Post. His articles on media, politics and current affairs can be found here.
A Cincinnati native, Ray is an alumnus of Northern Kentucky University along with classmate George Clooney. He’s a published author, a blogger and a songwriter and electronic musician with four CD’s and dozens of digital downloads available on iTunes, Amazon, and streaming on Rhapsody, and Spotify. He’s made the stunning landscape of California’s Mojave Desert his home for more than 20 years where he raises German Shepherds and collects cheesy made-for-TV movies of the ’70’s. He spends much of his free time with family and friends in Cincinnati.