Disney ultimatum forces SVP to quit

NEW YORK: ABC Television is losing its communications chief as a result of Disney’s demand that all PR staffers relocate to Los Angeles.

NEW YORK: ABC Television is losing its communications chief as a result of Disney’s demand that all PR staffers relocate to Los Angeles.

NEW YORK: ABC Television is losing its communications chief as a

result of Disney’s demand that all PR staffers relocate to Los

Angeles.



Patricia Matson, SVP of communications, informed the company of her

decision last Tuesday, the deadline set months ago by parent company

Disney.



The status of other top ABC PR execs remains up in the air. Ed

Dandridge, VP of network communications, is on vacation until next

Monday and is understood to have asked the company for more time to

consider his options.



Both VP of corporate projects Julie Hoover and director of media

relations Susan Sewell will remain in New York, as their positions are

not part of the relocation effort.



Around 110 east coast PR staffers, including those in internal

communications, educational outreach, public service and back office

divisions, were affected by Disney’s ultimatum, which was motivated by

budgetary concerns and handed down by head mouseketeer Michael

Eisner.



Disney will likely keep those who choose to remain in New York on board

until September 2000, but reserves the right to terminate employment at

any time. ’People might not feel right personally about this, but Disney

has given everyone ample notice and has been generous and fair,’ said

one company spokesperson.



Matson, who has been with the network for 22 years, joined ABC in

Washington, DC as a news publicist and rose through the ranks to one of

the company’s top communications posts.



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