Disney EVP: 'Social responsibility is in our DNA'

Disney's first-ever social impact leader believes business can be a 'force for good'

Disney EVP: 'Social responsibility is in our DNA'

Disney has named its first-ever executive vice president for Social Responsibility – at a time when consumers, employees and investors are relying increasingly on business leaders to “drive positive, impactful change in the world”.

Jenny Cohen, who has been with the media and entertainment group for more than two decades, will take on the newly created position overseeing the company’s corporate social responsibility and Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) initiatives.

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Having led Disney’s customer relationship programmes prior to her appointment, Cohen believes companies can be a “force for good in our communities”. As part of the group’s CEO Diversity and Inclusion Council, she is known for actively campaigning for a more inclusive workplace culture.

While the company has had a difficult year due to the pandemic, Cohen is eager to “activate [Disney] brands and businesses” for transformation despite the challenging socio-economic climate.

“Social responsibility is an integral part of our DNA at Disney, and I look forward to partnering with leaders from across our businesses as we strive to use our unique global platform and resources to drive the greatest impact,” she said.

Read more: Corporate social responsibility – a challenge for HR?

Cohen will report directly to Disney CEO Bob Chapek and coordinate high-impact projects cross-functionally throughout the organisation. She will also be responsible for tracking the company’s ESG metrics and reporting results to stakeholders.

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“Consumers, employees and investors are increasingly looking to companies to drive positive, impactful change in the world,” Chapek said. “At Disney, our goal is to be as admired for our values and contributions to society as we are for the superb entertainment we create.

“Jenny is an extremely talented, strategic and collaborative leader who has helped define not only what the Disney brand represents, but what the brand should stand for, and I am pleased that she will be leading this important work,” he said.

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