Disney’s COO, Thomas Staggs, Steps Down
On April 4, 2016, Thomas Staggs, COO of the Walt Disney Company, announced his resignation. Staggs, now 55, has been working for Disney since 1990, and was promoted to chief operating officer on February 5, 2015. His announcement comes as a shock to many, especially since he was the heir apparent to the highly coveted CEO position. Current CEO, Robert (A.K.A Bob) Iger, plans to retire in 2018, which means Disney will have to find a replacement soon.
The next CEO will have a huge responsibility when considering all of the success that Bob Iger has brought to Disney. The one who seemed to measure up was Staggs, who, during his time as chief financial officer, played an important role in Marvel and Pixar deals. As chairman of theme parks and resorts, he increased the profit to more than double the previous number. Staggs’ former rival, James Rasulo, was perhaps the only other person qualified, but he left June of last of year.
While some critics insist that the questionable future will surely lead to a rocky road when considering Disney’s weakness of transferring from executive to executive, it is important to realize that Disney has been highly influential around the world. It has inspired millions to follow their dreams and remain hopeful no matter the circumstances, stay true to oneself, and, most importantly, to have courage and be kind (yes, that is a reference to the live-action Cinderella). Although it has been nearly half a century since Walt Disney’s death, his legacy has lived on. Generations of children have grown up watching classics like The Jungle Book and The Little Mermaid, and have gone on countless trips to Disneyland.
Now that Bob Iger’s time will be coming to a close and Thomas Staggs is out, Disney is hanging in the balance in terms of its leadership. However, one thing is for sure: fans will always remain loyal to the conglomerate that, as Walt himself put it, “was all started with a mouse”.