Disney Names ABC Exec Head Lobbyist
Walt Disney Co. named ABC Television Network president and former News Corp. lobbyist Preston Padden head of government relations. Padden will report to Disney Chairman and Chief Executive Michael Eisner and handle the company’s dealings with the federal government. Disney didn’t immediately name a replacement. Padden joined ABC in May 1997 to take charge of ABC’s advertising sales, affiliate relations and operations departments. He also lobbied the government on behalf of the network. He didn’t have any say over ABC programming. Before ABC, Padden was chairman and chief executive of American Sky Broadcasting, a satellite TV venture between News Corp. and MCI Communications Corp. He is a former president of telecommunications and television for News Corp. He also handled government relations for News Corp. and was president for 12 years of the Assn. of Independent Television Stations, an industry trade group representing non-network stations.