Disney this morning announced a restructuring of its ESPN and Disney Media Networks units sales organizations, giving ESPN President-Global Sales & Marketing Ed Erhardt an expanded role overseeing consumer marketing, research and all sales business operations. He reports to John Skipper, ESPN president and co-chairman, Disney Media Networks.
Erhardt, a one-time publisher of Advertising Age, has been with ESPN for 16 years, working closely with Skipper to build an “integrated” sales organization traversing TV, print and digital media. He began his career as a sales rep for New York alternatively newsweekly Soho Weekly News in the 1980s.
In a related move, the company promoted Justin Connolly to executive vice president of Disney & ESPN affiliate sales and marketing, making him responsible for all aspects of domestic distribution and affiliate marketing including affiliate-related business operations for Disney and ESPN Media Networks including ABC Family, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, Fusion, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNEWS, ESPN Deportes, ESPNU, ESPN Classic, ESPN Goal Line, ESPN Buzzer Beater, ESPN Bases Loaded, Longhorn Network, SEC ESPN Network, and related Watch, HDTV, video-on-demand, interactive television and retransmission consent agreements for The Walt Disney Company’s eight-owned ABC stations.Based in Bristol and New York, Connolly will report to Skipper and Ben Sherwood, president, Disney/ABC Television Group and co-chairman, Disney Media Networks, working closely with Ben Pyne, president, global distribution, Disney Media Networks