It comes with little surprise that the Board of Directors for the Walt Disney Co. crowned Robert Iger to replace Michael Eisner as CEO of the Magic Kingdom. Iger’s reign will go into effect Sept. 30, 2005, when Eisner’s contract expires.
Eisner’s right hand man was widely considered the heir apparent, though the company says it conducted a "thorough and exhaustive" search, hiring the executive search firm of Heidrick & Struggles to assist with the process.
Iger comments, “It is truly an honor to be entrusted with the responsibility of guiding this great company that occupies such an important place in the hearts and minds of millions the world over toward a very bright future.”
Before becoming president and chief operating officer of The Walt Disney Co. in January of 2000, Iger served as chairman of the Disney-owned ABC Group, where he guided the complex merger of ABC with The Walt Disney Co. and held the post of president of Walt Disney International.
In a letter to the board supporting Iger’s appointment, Eisner notes that he is excited about a book I wrote, titled Camp, which is set to hit stores on Father’s Day. On that subject, he mentions, perhaps jokingly, that he would like to return to Keewaydin, the camp of his youth, as a counselor. Eisner also expressed joy over the engagement of his son, Breck, who made his directorial debut with Sahara, an action/adventure comedy Paramount is releasing next month. He concludes the letter with, "Beginning October 1, I expect to clean off my hiking boots, re-stock my Mickey Mouse backpack and start surveying some of the other peaks that are on the horizon."