The Walt Disney Company has found a replacement for longtime communications director Zenia Mucha, sources say Variety.
Geoff Morrell, currently executive vice president of communications and defense at oil and gas company BP, landed the job. After nearly 20 years in the Disney role, Mucha announced this summer that she would step down at the end of the year (in line with the exit of executive chairman Bob Iger from the media giant).
In addition to Mucha’s duties, sources said Morrell would also handle government relations. Under the current regime, it was a function of the office of the principal legal counsel of the Walt Disney Company. Alan Braverman, current chief advisor and senior executive vice president, will also be leaving Disney at the end of the year.
The Walt Disney Company did not immediately respond to requests for comment. A timeline for an official announcement was not immediately clear.
Morrell, who will report to Disney CEO Bob Chapek, ticks several boxes for such an important role in a post-Iger Disney. On the crisis front, he is seen as “an instrument in rebuilding BP’s reputation after the Deepwater Horizon accident” – an oil spill considered one of the greatest environmental disasters in modern history.
Prior to BP, Morrell spent four years in the Pentagon as the chief spokesperson for the US Department of Defense under the administrations of George W. Bush and Barack Obama. He also worked as a reporter, covering the White House for ABC News.
Morrell’s extracurricular activities include seats on the Georgetown University Board of Trustees, the National Board of the White House Historical Association, and the Board of Trustees of the American Ditchley Foundation.