Lynette Rice
October 29, 2015 AT 06:05 PM EDT

A longtime veteran of FOX and friend to EW is leaving the network at the end of the year.

Fox TV Group Chief Operating Officer Joe Earley, who began his career at FOX in publicity, has served in his current position since August 2014. 

“Over the past 21 years, I’ve had the great fortune of working alongside some of the most talented and inspiring people in the business, from my co-workers and bosses, to the talent on our shows, both in front of and behind the camera,” said Earley in a statement. “Because of the entrepreneurial spirit that pervades FOX, and the incredible support of the teams across the network, I have been afforded unbelievable opportunities for growth and new experiences. I’m very grateful to Dana Walden, Gary Newman and Peter Rice for their leadership and friendship, and for inviting me to join them at the Fox Television Group, which has allowed me to also appreciate the impressive team on the studio side. All of this new opportunity, however, as rewarding as it is, has led me further and further from the creative process, which is really where my heart wants to be. So, while I will miss my extended FOX family terribly, it is time for me to pursue the proverbial, ‘next chapter.’ As a former publicist, I thought I would never use that phrase, but it turns out that sometimes it’s true.”

Earley oversaw marketing and communications, as well as talent relations, scheduling and audience strategy. He’s also played a key management role in scripted programming and development and casting.

Before joining Fox as a senior publicist in 1994, Earley spent several years in Media Relations at HBO and began his entertainment career in production and development with producer Gale Anne Hurd.

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