Former Obama and Biden administration staffer Kristina Schake named Executive Vice President, Global Communications of The Walt Disney Company

Apr 06, 2022 in "The Walt Disney Company"

Posted: Wednesday April 6, 2022 8:30am ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

The Walt Disney Company has named Kristina Schake as Executive Vice President, Global Communications, reporting to Chief Corporate Affairs Officer Geoff Morrell.

She will be responsible for the Company’s worldwide communications strategy and operations, while also serving as lead spokesperson. Her appointment is effective immediately.

Schake has spent three decades working in government, media, business, entertainment, and technology. Most recently, she was appointed by President Biden to lead the nationwide COVID-19 vaccine education campaign and was previously Global Communications Director for Instagram. Schake was Deputy Communications Director for Hillary Clintons 2016 presidential campaign and served in the Obama administration as Special Assistant to the President and Communications Director to the First Lady.

“I could not be more pleased to welcome Kristina to Disney and to have her leading communications for the company,” Morrell said. “Her experience in the public and private sectors, in political and corporate campaigns, make her ideally suited for this important role and to help me integrate communications with government relations, public policy, and corporate social responsibility into a new Corporate Affairs team. Together with the exceptional professionals at Disney, we will help the world’s greatest storytelling company engage even more effectively with our many stakeholders around the world.”

Said Schake, “As Disney approaches its 100th anniversary, I’m excited to lead the company’s global communications work at this pivotal moment of growth and transformation. The magical stories and experiences Disney creates enrich the lives of countless people around the world and it’s an honor for me to be a part of that, helping Bob Chapek, Geoff Morrell, and the talented teams throughout the company tell the story of Disney as it begins its second century.”

With this role, Schake is returning home to California, where she served for several years as the senior communications strategist for First Lady Maria Shriver, the Women’s Conference, and the California Endowment’s Building Healthy Communities Initiative. In 2009, she co-founded the American Foundation for Equal Rights, which led the successful bipartisan public awareness campaign and legal challenge to restore marriage equality to California. She began her career working for Los Angeles Mayor Richard J. Riordan. Schake is a native of Sonoma, California, and is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University.

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DCBakerApr 20, 2023

"Kristina Schake, who joined Disney a little more than a year ago as EVP and Chief Communications Officer, is getting a pay raise and a contract extension. In an SEC filing, the company said it made the moves due to an “increase in her responsibilities,” though it did not elaborate. Disney said it had amended the original employment agreement it reached with Schake as of June 29, 2022. The original expiration of her contract has been extended to June 29, 2026, a year longer than the original deal. Her base salary has also been boosted to $780,000 as of April 9 of this year, with “future increases at the company’s discretion,” according to the filing. Schake’s target bonus award has also been increased to 150% of her base salary and her target long-term equity incentive annual award value upped to 350% of her base salary. A previous SEC filing said Schake’s initial salary was $725,000 and her total 2022 compensation reached $6.2 million including bonuses and stock awards." Full article below.

Magic Crush DropApr 12, 2022

I hope this thread gets locked.

CaptainAmericaApr 08, 2022

Wanna start a grift with me?

Wendy PleakleyApr 08, 2022

I want to see the insurance policy that refunds a trip because the company is "woke".

IDSkinnerApr 08, 2022

Sadly, this likely will be my tenth and last trip to WDW. My hope that Disney would just stay Disney and not lean in to the political fray has been dashed. Disney, you should've stayed that happy destination that all could just feel the happy and positive energy that has been Disney, but you had to suck in ABC and the far left liberal/woke air and really push this family away. In many ways my wife and I are regretting booking a vacation for this year and are contemplating using the vacation insurance that I thankfully purchased to assist in cancelling my trip and am currently exploring those options today.

Crunchie9Apr 07, 2022

I don’t expect them to miss this Q. Never did. But it’s not sustainable.

Bill in AtlantaApr 07, 2022

I would associate this welcoming feeling more with classical liberalism. The concepts of liberty and freedom are central to creating a welcoming place, and I don't see that being valued by the loudest voices on the left today.


The place has evolved, I’m an outdoors guy, I had more fun exploring the trails, looking for alligators, fishing, using all their other activities and a omissions I don’t need the parks as much to stay occupied. Aparantly it’s now considered a nature preserve to now. Walking the golf course pathways along their landscapes in the evening is something else. Their pools in my opinion now are amazing, there lazy river isn’t half bad and now you just turn right into the new highway and only hit 2 lights and there’s a Disney World entrance right around the corner. I highly recommend revisiting. Then to avoid Disney costs I’ll spend a couple days in St Augustine and that itself feels like the parks without the rides. Hotel rates are incredible compared to Orlando and you can walk right into town. That town to is heavily themed as well with some acting and entertainment, it has a Disney feel but the surroundings are as real and authentic as they come.

LilofanApr 06, 2022

Fyi - raising prices helped the recent quarter for TWDC parks, experiences and products - company reported to Wall Street - increased to $7.2 billion.

No NameApr 06, 2022

Yes, because he’s recognized it’s an area that needs improvement. There’s no evidence Bob Chapek is liberal or good at communication, two things this person is. I’ll add that sometimes people here think Chapek has to go for reasons the board and investors don’t care about or even like, such as raising prices, unthemed showbuildings, genie+, etc. The botched PR a few weeks ago is an actual strain against him and the biggest one yet, and he needs to show the board he will not repeat that.

LilofanApr 06, 2022

Does one think a CEO would bring an incoming PR exec that does not?

No NameApr 06, 2022

Before a couple of weeks ago, the word was that Bob Chapek had no interest in being an anything-leaning company and the guy himself is not liberal. Evidently that didn’t pan out well for him. They’ve been a liberal company for decades and will continue to be because it’s in their very nature.

No NameApr 06, 2022

This seems to be pretty clearly in response to the fact that they absolutely butchered their response to the Don’t Say Gay bill/law. First Bob Chapek said nothing, then apologized too late, and paused donations to all politicians on both the good and bad side. So he pissed off left-leaning people, right-leaning people, and all politicians. And we’ve seen backlash from all of those people. Disney almost could not have done a worse job here, and I’m very glad they’re bringing in someone new, not because I know this person but because they’ll almost certainly make things better. Aligns with the Chapek mindset? How so?

DisneyHead123Apr 06, 2022

Liberal, maybe (although how liberal Disney has actually been historically is debatable). Progressive, by 2022 standards? That’s a very different and very new story. I don’t think there’s enough history on that to predict how Disney will do if it adopts this paradigm. Maybe they’ll do great, who knows? But I don’t think there are enough data points there to make a prediction.