Dee Dee Myers is stepping down as executive vice president of worldwide corporate communications and public affairs for Warner Bros., Variety has learned. Her decision ends a five-year run at the studio for Myers, who joined the company after a distinguished career that included a stint as White House press secretary during President Bill Clinton’s first term. She was first woman to hold the position.
In an interview with Variety, Myers said she isn’t sure what the future will hold for her, but she felt that it was the right time to make the move.
“I’m going to take some time to figure out what’s next,” Myers said. “I don’t have any set ideas. At the same time, media has been a part of what I’ve done for a long time. So I expect it will be connected in some way to what I do next. It’s a fascinating industry and a fascinating time to be in it.”
Myers previously served as managing director of the Glover Park Group, a communications consulting firm, and worked as a political analyst and commentator. She authored “Why Women Should Rule the World,” a best-selling examination of the benefits of having female leaders.
Myers’ tenure at Warner Bros. coincided with a tumultuous period for the studio. She joined before its parent company, Time Warner, sold itself to AT&T, and then had to help the studio stay on message as that merger became topic of a regulatory battle in Washington. She also ran communications as Warner Bros. integrated into AT&T, a period that saw Myers’ former boss, Kevin Tsujihara, get forced out amid allegations that he used his position to get auditions for an actress with whom he was having an affair. Myers remained on board as Tsujihara’s replacement, Ann Sarnoff, a former executive at the Women’s National Basketball Association, Dow Jones and BBC America, took over as chief executive at Warner Bros.
“While we only worked together a short time, I found Dee Dee to be the consummate comms executive — thoughtful, strategic, well-connected and well-respected,” Sarnoff said in a statement. “She’s been a valued member of the company’s senior leadership team, and I’m extremely grateful for her professionalism and the many contributions she made to Warner Bros. during her tenure. I wish her great success in her next chapter.”
Although Myers came to the job with more experience in the political arena than in Hollywood, she quickly developed relationships with journalists covering the entertainment space. In an email to staff, Myers said she was proud of the role she had played in helping Warner Bros. expand its diversity and inclusion efforts (the studio was the first to adopt an inclusion rider on its productions), as well as aiding it in rebuilding its philanthropy programs
“Like all good comms groups, we also managed the blocking and tackling of media relations and crisis communications,” Myers wrote. “We faced our share of long days, late nights and heart-stopping headlines. But together, we kept working to tell the Warner Bros. story, authentically and truthfully.”
Myers last day will be April 1. Her replacement has yet to be named.
“Whoever comes next, I’m happy to share my insights with, but I’m sure they’ll create the job in their own way,” Myers said. “I just feel fortunate to have worked with a lot of great people and to leave with new friends who I think will be lifelong friends.”
Myers closed her message to staff with a quote from Bruce Springsteen, “‘No one you have been, and no place you have ever gone, leaves you. The new parts of you simply jump in the car and go along for the rest of the ride,'” She wrote. “From the bottom of my heart, thanks for letting me share this part of my ride with you.”
Here’s the full text of Myers’ letter to staff:
After more than five fantastic years at Warner Bros., the time has come for me to move on. I do so with tremendous gratitude for my time here, for the work that we’ve done together and for the opportunity to have learned so much from all of you.
Warner Bros. is an amazing company with nearly a century of success, rooted in an unyielding commitment to great storytelling. And that commitment has produced some of the world’s most iconic films, television shows and games –and an incomparable company culture. For generations, this studio has been a special place to work, and I feel honored to have been a small part of it for the past half-decade.
For me, it starts with the incredible Worldwide Corporate Communications and Public Affairs team. Our charge has been not only to protect Warner Bros.’ singular legacy–- but to ensure that the company’s commitments and actions are worthy of that history going forward. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of the entire group — and so many talented colleagues across the company — we accomplished so much.
Nowhere is that more evident than on the iconic water tower, where our new, more modern shield connects Warner Bros.’ storied history to its vibrant future. It’s the centerpiece of our effort to refresh the brand, articulate the company’s mission and values for the first time, and sum up our shared purpose in a single line: We believe in the power of story.
We also doubled down on our diversity and inclusion efforts. We started a dialogue with our employees aimed at building a worldwide culture of true belonging, helped launch WarnerMedia’s Production Diversity Policy and led the process of creating and releasing the industry’s first annual Diversity & Inclusion Report. We rebuilt our Corporate Social Responsibility and philanthropy programs — focused on creating more opportunities in our industry for underrepresented groups and on doing our work sustainably — and we launched our new CSR platform: WB Good. We helped roll out the Second Century real estate project. We worked with state and local policy makers to support production around the world. And we helped manage countless events to connect all our employees to the incredible work Warner Bros does.
Like all good comms groups, we also managed the blocking and tackling of media relations and crisis communications. We faced our share of long days, late nights and heart-stopping headlines. But together, we kept working to tell the Warner Bros. story, authentically and truthfully.
And finally, we had the honor of welcoming our new CEO, Ann Sarnoff. We worked with all of you to help her introduce herself to the company and to the industry, showcasing her talents, accomplishments and vision for Warner Bros.’ future. I don’t have to tell any of you: in her first months, she has shone, and I’m excited to see where she and all of you take the company going forward.
As Warner Bros. and WarnerMedia move into this new era, I will leave on April 1 with only the fondest memories – and a trunk full of swag. Fully expect to see me sporting hats, t-shirts, backpacks, hoodies, raincoats, socks and reusable water bottles – and know that I will be rooting for all of you.
As one of my heroes, Bruce Springsteen, wrote, “No one you have been, and no place you have ever gone, leaves you. The new parts of you simply jump in the car and go along for the rest of the ride.” From the bottom of my heart, thanks for letting me share this part of my ride with you. I will carry all that I have seen and all that I have learned always.
All my best,