Nell Scovell

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Nell Scovell
Born Helen Vivian Scovell[1]
Newton, Massachusetts
Alma mater Harvard University
Occupation Journalist, writer, producer, director
Spouse(s) Thomas Jonah Tisch (divorced)
Colin Summers
Children 2

Nell Scovell is a television and magazine writer, producer and director. She is the creator of the television series Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, which aired on ABC and The WB from 1996 until 2003.

Early life and education[edit]

Nell Scovell, the middle of five children, grew up outside of Newton, Massachusetts.[2][3] Her father, Melvin E. Scovell, is chairman of the board of Scovell & Schwager, a health-care management company in Boston.[1] In high school at Newton South High School, she was the manager of the boys' track team. Scovell attended Harvard University, where she spent her time reporting and editing sports stories for The Harvard Crimson. In her senior year at Harvard, she wrote for the sports desk of the Boston Globe.[2] She graduated cum laude from Harvard University in 1982.


After graduation, she moved to New York and was the first staff writer hired by Spy magazine in 1986.[2] Tina Brown recruited her to work at Vanity Fair, contributing quirky visual features about money and culture.[2]

Scovell wrote a spec script for It's Garry Shandling's Show, which they bought, and after serving as story editor for the final season of Newhart, she worked for David Letterman.[2]

As a television writer, Scovell wrote the season two episode of The Simpsons, "One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish". Other TV writing credits include The Wilton North Report, Coach, Monk, Murphy Brown, Charmed, Newhart, The Critic, NCIS, and many others. She also wrote the season two episode of Space Ghost Coast to Coast, "Urges".

Outside of television, Scovell was the first staff writer hired at Spy magazine and is a former contributing editor at Vanity Fair. She has also written for Vogue, Rolling Stone, Self, Tatler, and The New York Times Magazine. She currently blogs for Vanity Fair's web site.

Scovell has also directed two made for television movies: Hayley Wagner, Star for Showtime and It Was One of Us for Lifetime.

Personal life[edit]

Scovell married Thomas Jonah Tisch, whose father is Laurence Tisch, on June 16, 1985. This was her second marriage.[1] She is currently married to Colin Summers and has two children.

Comedian/magician Penn Jillette called her "one of the funniest people alive" in an interview with The A.V. Club.[4]

Scovell co-wrote Sheryl Sandberg's 2013 book Lean In.[5]


  1. ^ a b c "Nell Scovell, Writer, Marries Thomas Jonah Tisch". The New York Times. June 17, 1985. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Bennett, Laura (December 4, 2013). "From Vanity Fair to Letterman to Lean In: The Long, Strange Journey of Nell Scovell". New York Magazine. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  3. ^ Le, D. Dona (November 2013). "Nell Scovell '82". Harvardwood. 
  4. ^ "Interview, Penn and Teller Part 2". 
  5. ^ "Sheryl Sandberg's 'Lean In' offers a feminist view from the top". 

External links[edit]