James Pitaro has been appointed the new president of ESPN and the co-chair of Disney Media Networks.
Pitaro had been the chairman of Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media since 2016. He was formerly a vice president and head of Yahoo! Media, including leading Yahoo! Sports. His appointment is effective immediately.
“As a passionate and lifelong sports fan, I am honoured to be joining the ESPN team during such a pivotal time in its storied history,” commented 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.”
Among the first orders of business for Pitaro is the launch of ESPN+, the network’s direct-to-consumer subscription streaming service, which debuts in the spring.
“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,” said Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger. “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.”