ITHACA, NY--Bob Iger, president and chief executive officer of the Walt Disney Company and a 1973 graduate of Ithaca College, has been named MarketWatch CEO of the Year. A subsidiary of Dow Jones & Company, MarketWatch is a leading provider of business news, financial information and analytical tools. Iger was most recently on campus in October to help Ithaca launch its $115 million “Making a World of Difference” fund-raising campaign. As the campaign’s honorary chair, he delivered an address to the campus community and met with students and faculty.
“This is a well-deserved honor for Bob, and indicative of the passion and perseverance he brings to all of his endeavors,” said Peggy R. Williams, president of Ithaca College. “He has been a longtime friend of the college, and we are fortunate to have him leading this significant fund-raising effort.”
After earning a degree in television-radio from Ithaca College in 1973, Iger joined ABC, where he began a steady rise through the management ranks. He was named president and chief operating officer of ABC’s corporate parent, Capital Cities/ABC, in 1994. In that role he helped guide the merger two years later with the Walt Disney Company. In October of 2005, he succeeded Michael Eisner as the sixth CEO in Walt Disney’s 83-year history.
Iger has served on the Ithaca College Board of Trustees and is currently an honorary member. He is a member of the board of directors of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, a trustee of the American Film Institute, and serves on the Executive Advisory Board of the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation.
According to the MarketWatch announcement, “With a blend of bold strokes and olive branches…Robert Iger has re-imagineered the Walt Disney Co.’s culture and reanimated its stock. Disney’s $7 billion buyout of Pixar was just one of many moves in the past year that won plaudits for Iger. The company, formerly bogged down by board and shareholder discord, has emerged as an example of good corporate governance.”
A panel of MarketWatch senior editors made the selection from among executives of publicly traded U.S. companies, taking into account the executives’ track records this year in four main areas: stock price, performance for customers, treatment of employees and corporate-governance initiatives.