NEW YORK — ABC Inc. has upped Patricia Matson to senior VP of communications as part of an overall restructuring of its PR operations, which was announced Monday.
Matson, a 21-year ABC vet, will be responsible for all internal and external communications departments at the Disney-owned company, including the ABC Television Network and other ABC divisions. She’ll continue to report to ABC Inc. topper Robert Iger.
In the past, ABC divided responsibility for its communications staffs, with one VP handling ABC Inc. PR and another in charge of network-level divisions such as entertainment, news and sports. The former position, which had been held by Matson since 1984, reported to Iger, while the latter slot reported to the president of the network.
Under the new structure, Matson will head a unified communications department, with a yet-to-be-named VP for network PR reporting to her. Matson is expected to fill that position within the next two weeks; the buzz around ABC is that she’s selected veteran publicist Ed Dandridge for the job.
Matson has been with ABC since 1977, joining the network as director of news information at ABC News in Washington. That same year, she was named director of business information, relocating to the web’s New York headquarters.
In 1979 Matson was upped to VP, overseeing broadcast public relations. She was elected a corporate officer of ABC in 1984.
Before joining ABC, Matson served at the Nixon and Ford White House as a press assistant/speechwriter from 1973-77.