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Disney's Iger on executive shuffle

November 12, 2009 | 11:48 am

Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Bob Iger said he had been planning for "quite some time" to give Chief Financial Officer Tom Staggs and Disney Parks Chairman Jay Rasulo new responsibilities, to broaden and deepen the experience of the executive team, but had been forestalled because of the economy.

Disney's Iger "It's something that was my idea, something I broached with them a number of months ago," Iger said, adding he waited "until things stabilized before I moved them out of their roles."

Iger said that as chairman of Disney's Parks and Resorts division, Staggs gets an opportunity to gain operational experience  -- although he denied Staggs is being positioned for the presidency, a long-unfilled No. 2 role at the company. "I've never known he's been looking for elevated responsibilities in the company," Iger said.

A Disney insider say the moves are intended to strengthen the executive team when Iger names a chief operating officer.

For Rasulo, the new post gives him a chance to manage the financial aspects of the company.

"I think that this is something that is very equitable for them, when it comes to broadening their horizons," Iger said, noting, "This is about them changing jobs, giving them different responsibilities, enabling them to contend with different challenges."

And expect more of the same in the future, Iger said, adding that a co-chair of Disney's Media Networks group, Anne Sweeney, had spent her career in cable television before she was tapped to run the ABC Network, and former Disney Channel worldwide President Rich Ross is now heading the studio.

-- Dawn C. Chmielewski

Photo: Bob Iger. Credit: David McNew / Getty Images