Howard Swartz serves as Vice President, Documentaries and Specials for Discovery Channel. In this role he is responsible for helping develop the slate of programming, supervising editorial content and helping manage the phases of production for Discovery’s documentary films and specials, including Shark Week.
Swartz earlier served as Vice President of Development and Production for Discovery Channel and was Discovery’s key live event executive producer and oversaw programming that included Skyscraper Live with Nik Wallenda, Discovery’s #1 telecast in 2014 and 2013’s Skywire Live With Nik Wallenda which was the highest-rated live event in Discovery Channel history. Swartz also oversaw the blue-chip science seriesCuriosity which included the groundbreaking episode Plane Crash and the Emmy nominated Battlefield Cell. Additionally, Swartz was responsible for many of Discovery’s topical specials including Everest Avalanche Tragedy, Super Storm Sandy, and Inside Raising the Concordia, among others.
Swartz joined Discovery from PBS’ acclaimed science series NOVA, where he acted as executive producer since 2010, overseeing numerous award-winning documentaries including Japan’s Killer Quake, NOVA’s highest rated program in the past five years. While working on NOVA, Swartz won the prestigious Alfred I. DuPont Award from Columbia University as well as an AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Award.
Prior to NOVA, Swartz was with the National Geographic Channel where he oversaw the signature series Explorer and executive produced more than 100 programs including Emmy® -winners Five Years on Mars (2009), Inside the Living Body (2008) and Incredible Human Machine (2008). Under his creative oversight, a number of specials achieved high-profile success, including On Board Air Force One, the channel’s highest-rated one-hour premiere in history.
From 2002-2006, Swartz was co-founder and executive producer of BellaSwartz Productions, where he developed, produced, directed and wrote award-winning non-fiction programs for networks including Discovery Channel, Science, History and National Geographic.
Swartz is a graduate of the University of Virginia.
Speaking on: 30 Minutes With: Howard Swartz, Discovery Channel (3:00pm-3:30pm)