UPDATED with Ann Sarnoff memo: Deadline has confirmed that Warner Bros’ EVP Worldwide Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Dee Dee Myers is leaving the studio after five years in the job. She will depart the Burbank lot on April 1. A successor to the post hasn’t been named; I hear there will be a search.
The news was a bit of a surprise to staff who revere Myers. Warner Bros chair and CEO Ann Sarnoff informed staff Monday in a memo, saying in part that Myers has “been a great and valued member of the Warner Bros family and will be missed.” (Read her memo below).
During her busy time at Warner Bros, Myers saw the studio’s merger with AT&T, the departure of Warner Bros CEO Kevin Tsujihara amid allegations of misconduct, and the arrival of his replacement Sarnoff from BBC Studios America. Myers is reportedly contemplating her next move, most likely in the media industry.
“For generations, this studio has been a special place to work, and I feel honored to have been a small part of it for the past half-decade, Myers said in her own memo (read it in full below).
Myers was the White House Press Secretary under President Bill Clinton during his first term. She was the first woman to hold the job. Given her experience with POTUS, she served as a consultant across 119 episodes of NBC drama series The West Wing from 1999-005, was the co-host of Equal Time on CNBC, and the author of the 2008 New York Times bestseller Why Women Should Rule the World. Prior to Warners, Myers served as managing director of communications firm Glover Park Group. She is a Santa Clara University alum and a distinguished graduate of Hart High School in Santa Clarita.
Below is Meyers’ departure e-mail to staff:
After more than five fantastic years at Warner Bros., the time has come for me to move on. I do so with tremendous gratitude for my time here, for the work that we’ve done together and for the opportunity to have learned so much from all of you.
Warner Bros. is an amazing company with nearly a century of success, rooted in an unyielding commitment to great storytelling. And that commitment has produced some of the world’s most iconic films, television shows and games –and an incomparable company culture. For generations, this studio has been a special place to work, and I feel honored to have been a small part of it for the past half-decade.
For me, it starts with the incredible Worldwide Corporate Communications and Public Affairs team. Our charge has been not only to protect Warner Bros.’ singular legacy–- but to ensure that the company’s commitments and actions are worthy of that history going forward. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of the entire group — and so many talented colleagues across the company — we accomplished so much.
Nowhere is that more evident than on the iconic water tower, where our new, more modern shield connects Warner Bros.’ storied history to its vibrant future. It’s the centerpiece of our effort to refresh the brand, articulate the company’s mission and values for the first time, and sum up our shared purpose in a single line: We believe in the power of story.
We also doubled down on our diversity and inclusion efforts. We started a dialogue with our employees aimed at building a worldwide culture of true belonging, helped launch WarnerMedia’s Production Diversity Policy and led the process of creating and releasing the industry’s first annual Diversity & Inclusion Report. We rebuilt our Corporate Social Responsibility and philanthropy programs — focused on creating more opportunities in our industry for underrepresented groups and on doing our work sustainably — and we launched our new CSR platform: WB Good. We helped roll out the Second Century real estate project. We worked with state and local policy makers to support production around the world. And we helped manage countless events to connect all our employees to the incredible work Warner Bros does.
Like all good comms groups, we also managed the blocking and tackling of media relations and crisis communications. We faced our share of long days, late nights and heart-stopping headlines. But together, we kept working to tell the Warner Bros. story, authentically and truthfully.
And finally, we had the honor of welcoming our new CEO, Ann Sarnoff. We worked with all of you to help her introduce herself to the company and to the industry, showcasing her talents, accomplishments and vision for Warner Bros.’ future. I don’t have to tell any of you: in her first months, she has shone, and I’m excited to see where she and all of you take the company going forward.
As Warner Bros. and WarnerMedia move into this new era, I will leave on April 1 with only the fondest memories – and a trunk full of swag. Fully expect to see me sporting hats, t-shirts, backpacks, hoodies, raincoats, socks and reusable water bottles – and know that I will be rooting for all of you.
As one of my heroes, Bruce Springsteen, wrote, “No one you have been, and no place you have ever gone, leaves you. The new parts of you simply jump in the car and go along for the rest of the ride.” From the bottom of my heart, thanks for letting me share this part of my ride with you. I will carry all that I have seen and all that I have learned always.
All my best,
Here’s Sarnoff’s note:
I wanted to let you know that Dee Dee Myers, Executive Vice President, Worldwide Corporate Communications and Public Affairs, has decided to leave the company.
While Dee Dee is probably best known as a former White House press secretary, here at Warner Bros. she was the unofficial face of Behind the Shield hosting numerous panels and town halls, a champion of the Business Resource Groups and a driving force behind the company’s historic brand and logo update last year. And all of that was in addition to her full-time job running Corporate Communications and Public Affairs at a time when the company and industry were going through significant transformation.
She’s been a great and valued member of the Warner Bros. family and will be missed. Below is a copy of the note Dee Dee sent to her staff this morning.
Please join me in wishing her all the best in her next chapter.