Nike’s Mark Parker To Become Chairman Of Walt Disney
The Walt Disney Company elected Mark Parker, a seven-year member of the Disney Board and executive chairman of Nike, Inc., as chairman of its board of directors, effective following its annual meeting of shareholders.
Parker succeeds Susan Arnold, who will not stand for re-election pursuant to the 15-year term limit under Walt Disney’s Board Tenure Policy. As a result, the size of the Board will be reduced to 11 members.
Parker served as Nike’s Chairman and CEO until 2020 when he became executive chairman. He was appointed CEO in 2006 and joined Nike in 1979.
“Mark Parker is an incredibly well-respected leader who over seven years as a Disney director has helped the company effectively navigate through a time of unprecedented change,” Arnold said. “During his four decades at Nike, Mark has led one of the world’s most recognized consumer brands through various market evolutions and a successful CEO transition, and he is uniquely positioned to chair the Disney Board during this period of transformation.”
“Mark Parker’s vision, incredible depth of experience and wise counsel have been invaluable to Disney, and I look forward to continuing working with him in his new role, along with our other directors, as we chart the future course for this amazing company,” said Robert A. Iger, chief executive officer, The Walt Disney Company. “On behalf of my fellow Board members and the entire Disney management team, I also want to thank Susan for her superb leadership as Chairman and for her tireless work over the past 15 years as an exemplary steward of the Disney brand.”
Said Parker: “I am honored to have the opportunity to serve as Disney’s Chairman, and I look forward to working closely with Bob and his management team on a strategy of growth that balances investment with profitability, while preserving Disney’s core mission of creative excellence, to deliver shareholder value. At the same time, it is the top priority of mine and the Board’s to identify and prepare a successful CEO successor, and that process has already begun.”
Parker will also chair a newly created Succession Planning Committee of the Board, which will advise the Board on CEO succession planning, including a review of internal and external candidates.
The Board is nominating for re-election at the company’s Annual Meeting incumbent directors Mary T. Barra, Safra A. Catz, Amy L. Chang, Francis A. deSouza, Carolyn Everson, Michael B.G. Froman, Robert A. Iger, Maria Elena Lagomasino, Calvin R. McDonald, Mark G. Parker, and Derica W. Rice.
Photo courtesy Getty