LUNCH AND LEARN TOPIC - “MAKING EXPERIENCE MATTER”
President, Theatrical Distribution, Franchise Management, and Business & Audience Insights, The Walt Disney Studios
A 25-year Disney veteran, Cathleen Taff leads global theatrical distribution, franchise management, and business and audience insights for The Walt Disney Studios.
Taff oversees worldwide theatrical release strategy for The Walt Disney Studios’ robust slate of motion pictures from Disney, Pixar, Disneynature, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, Twentieth Century Fox, and Blue Sky Studios. In addition to sales and distribution for the Studios’ films, she leads the franchise management and consumer insights teams, driving collaborative efforts to maximize Disney’s world-class film brands and creative properties across The Walt Disney Company and more closely connect with Disney’s global audience. She also oversees the Studios’ multicultural audience engagement and diversity and inclusion initiatives.
Taff joined The Walt Disney Studios in 1994 and has held roles of increasing responsibility and scope during her tenure. Between 1998 and 2003, she served first as Vice President of Finance and later Senior Vice President of Disney Music Group (then Buena Vista Music Group), playing a pivotal role in growing it into a $100 million business. After a five-year stint as Senior Vice President and Controller of The Walt Disney Studios, Taff took on a specially created role building and leading a team focused on identifying and boosting strategic operational initiatives across the Studios, before returning to Disney Music Group in 2009 as Senior Vice President and General Manager. In 2013, she transitioned back to the broader Studios leading Integrated Planning and Franchise Management.
She is a vice president on the Board of Directors, Executive Committee, for the Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneers Foundation and sits on the Economic Advisory Board for the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Born in Northern California, Taff received a B.A. degree in Business Economics with an emphasis in Accounting from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and is a Certified Public Accountant in California. She began her career at Deloitte & Touche.