The former Disney Consumer Products president has shifted roles to oversee ESPN and co-chair Disney Media Networks.
NORTH AMERICA–The Walt Disney Company has tapped Jimmy Pitaro to serve as the president of ESPN and the co-chair of Disney Media Networks, effective immediately.
In his new role, Pitaro will leverage his experience in sports, entertainment and technology to guide the sports channel. Pitaro’s appointment comes during a transitional period for ESPN as its prepares to launch its new direct-to-consumer subscription streaming service ESPN+. The new platform will be integrated into a reformulated ESPN app that will act as a hub for all ESPN related content.
“Jimmy is a talented and dedicated leader with the right strategic vision, relentless drive and passion for sports required to lead the stellar ESPN team at this incredibly dynamic time,” says Bob Iger, chairman and chief executive officer, The Walt Disney Company. “Jimmy forged his career at the intersection of technology, sports and media, and his vast experience and keen perspective will be invaluable in taking ESPN into the future. I also want to extend my utmost thanks to George Bodenheimer for serving as acting chair of ESPN these past few months; he is a true industry pioneer and helped make ESPN the undisputed leader in sports.”
Most recently, Pitaro served as the president of Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media, a position he has held since 2016. Prior to that, Pitaro was the co-chair of DCPI.
Pitaro joined Disney's former standalone interactive division in 2010 from Yahoo Media where he was vice president. As president of Disney Interactive, Pitaro led the company’s social media efforts across all platforms and spearheaded digital video projects that extend Disney storylines. He also oversaw the company’s multi-platform games business and a suite of premium web and app experiences that serve as the online and mobile gateways to Disney and its brands.
Before serving as VP of Yahoo Media, Pitaro was vice president and general manager of Yahoo Sports, and vice president and head of business affairs for Yahoo Music.
“As a passionate and lifelong sports fan, I am honored to be joining the ESPN team during such a pivotal time in its storied history,” says Pitaro. “The appetite for quality sports content across platforms has never been greater, and I am looking forward to working with the talented ESPN team as we continue to redefine the future fan experience.”