Producers, Writers & Advisors
In his roles as President of Echo Pictures and Executive Producer of GREAT MUSEUMS, Marc Doyle brings together all the skills and experiences he has acquired over a 50-year career as a journalist, a business executive, an author and a respected media industry expert. Doyle founded the independent production company Doyle & Associates (now Echo Pictures) in 1988, after a 20-year career as a pioneering television news executive. He is the architect of the GREAT MUSEUMS High Definition strategy and is guiding the extension of the GREAT MUSEUMS brand to multiple media platforms. He has the journalist’s passions for curiosity and discovery. As the principle on-location interviewer for the GREAT MUSEUMS series, he has interviewed dozens of museum scholars and experts, as well as the former Mayor of New York City, Rudy Giuliani, Rick West, the President of the American Association of Museums, Jim Billington, the Librarian of Congress, and, Morgan Freeman, the actor and supporter of the Delta Blues Museum for the Great Museums series. His work has been honored with Emmys, Tellys, New York Film/Tape Festival Medals of Achievement. He shares a Peabody Award and has been honored for Lifetime Achievement by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
Chesney B. Doyle
Creator of GREAT MUSEUMS, Chesney Blankenstein Doyle set out to design a concept destined to bridge the gap between the casual viewer looking for entertainment and the voracious lifelong learner. The award-winning series has been applauded by viewers, stations and the museum world. In the first year of production, she and co-producer/husband Marc Doyle traveled the country scouting and then field producing the 13 original shows that would define the GREAT MUSEUMS’ vision and signature style. As Executive in Charge of Production, she manages an expert team of producers, writers, videographers, editors and musical, voice and graphics talents. She also contributes as a lead producer/writer for the series. Chesney is the recipient of more than 30 international television awards, including multiple CINE Golden Eagle Awards, numerous national Telly Awards, Aurora Awards, and three Emmy nominations. She also was a finalist in the New York Festivals. A native of Natchez, Mississippi, she has a BA degree in English from the University of Virginia and a law degree from Vanderbilt University.
Philippe de Montebello
GREAT MUSEUMS Senior Advisor & Narrator, “Foreign Yet Familiar: The Art of Islam at the Met and the Louvre (release date: May 2019)
Philippe de Montebello, the first-ever Director Emeritus of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, is recognized as one of the field’s most influential and articulate champions of integrity, authority, and public access in museums. In December 2008, he retired after 31 years as the longest-serving director in the Metropolitan Museum’s nearly 150-year-long history. Under his leadership, The Metropolitan Museum of Art vastly increased its exhibition spaces, made innumerable outstanding acquisitions, mounted acclaimed international loan exhibitions, and developed wide-reaching educational programs.
Mr. de Montebello is currently Fiske Kimball Professor of the history and culture of museums at the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU and co-host of the weekly Emmy award program, NYC Arts, on NY Public Television. He continues to lecture throughout the world and to serve as an honorary member of the Board of Trustees of the Prado Museum, Madrid, and he is the Chairman of the Hispanic Society Museum and Library.
Susan Spann began her professional career in the 1980s as a magazine editor and writer in Atlanta, working for such trade favorites as “Fence Industry” and “Specialty Salesman.” She quickly made a beeline for the more colorful world of advertising. Starting in account services, she worked for clients such as Florida’s Natural Growers, Bell South, SunTrust Banks and White Lily Flour. In 1990 Susan turned her attention to writing and producing promotional videos for retail clients, which are featured in Visitors’ Centers and in traveling shows. She joined the GREAT MUSEUMS team in 2008, writing and producing webisodes on the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s then-Director Philippe de Montebello. She has since worked on An Acquiring Mind: Philippe de Montebello and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and New Orleans: A Living Museum of Music.
Randall G. Penn
Coordinating Producer Randall Penn began his television production/post-production career nearly 30 years ago. He joined GREAT MUSEUMS in 2005 as project manager and has been an indispensable part of the GREAT MUSEUMS team. A lover of museums, Randall says that working on the GREAT MUSEUMS series has been a personal and professional highlight.