Karen Hobson, who most recently was VP, Corporate Communications for the Disney|ABC Television Group, has been named senior VP, Communications, for The Walt Disney Company’s new Direct-to-Consumer and International (DTCI) segment. Hobson, a 21-year Disney veteran, will be responsible for overseeing all strategic communications efforts for the Direct-to-Consumer and International segment, which serves as a global, multiplatform media, technology and distribution organization for the content created by Disney’s Studio Entertainment and Media Networks groups.
DTCI includes Disney’s international media businesses and the Company’s direct-to-consumer businesses globally–including the upcoming Disney-branded streaming service, the recently launched ESPN+ streaming service, and the Company’s ownership stake in Hulu. Ms. Hobson will also help to drive internal communications initiatives across the segment.
She will be reporting to Zenia Mucha, senior executive VP and chief communications officer of The Walt Disney Company, and Kevin Mayer, chairman, Direct-to-Consumer and International, The Walt Disney Company.
“Karen is a strategic thinker with a wealth of communications expertise and a passion for innovative technologies that drive new opportunities and shape the media landscape,” Mr. Mayer said in a statement. “She’s a perfect fit for this critical part of our business and a welcome addition to our leadership team.”
In her previous post at Disney|ABC, Hobson oversaw communications and publicity related to distribution efforts, advertising sales and research initiatives, digital media products and services, and broadcast engineering and operations projects. She also led communications for Disney Media Distribution’s international content sales efforts and Disney|ABC Television Group’s eight ABC Owned Stations.
Ms. Hobson joined The Walt Disney Company in 1997 as manager, media relations for Disney Channel and then working in other publicity jobs inside Disney|ABC Cable Networks Group.
Prior to her stint at Disney, Hobson held publicity positions at Cartoon Network and Hanna-Barbera Animation. She began her career at Wilkinson/Lipsman Public Relations.