Willow Bay has been named dean of the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, the university’s president and provost said in a letter to staff.
The assignment promotes Bay from her previous position as director of the school of journalism. A new media center — named for Les Moonves and Julie Chen — was opened under her leadership, in addition to the creation of an undergraduate journalism major. Also created under Bay: a journalism master of science degree program and new fellowships for master’s degree candidates.
Bay previously worked as co-anchor of ABC News’ “Good Morning America” on Sunday and as anchor with CNN’s “Moneyline News Hour.”
Bay replaces Ernest J. Wilson III, the long-serving dean who founded the Annenberg Innovation Lab in 2010. He will remain at USC as a professor.
Bay, 53, is the wife of Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger. Her own career and connection to the Disney boss give her multiple connections to the media industry, which has provided key financial support to Annenberg during its expansion.
Bay holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from NYU’s Stern School of Business.