ESPN has had a tumultuous 2017 as the network has dealt with plenty of its own issues and it has yet another problem as president John Skipper is stepping down.
Here is the statement he released on why he is resigning at this moment in time:
“Today I have resigned from my duties as President of ESPN. I have had a wonderful career at the Walt Disney Company and am grateful for the many opportunities and friendships. I owe a debt to many, but most profoundly Michael Lynton, George Bodenheimer and Bob Iger.
“I have struggled for many years with a substance addiction. I have decided that the most important thing I can do right now is to take care of my problem.
“I have disclosed that decision to the company, and we mutually agreed that it was appropriate that I resign. I will always appreciate the human understanding and warmth that Bob displayed here and always.
“I come to this public disclosure with embarrassment, trepidation and a feeling of having let others I care about down.
“As I deal with this issue and what it means to me and my family, I ask for appropriate privacy and a little understanding.
“To my colleagues at ESPN, it has been a privilege. I take great pride in your accomplishments and have complete confidence in your collective ability to continue ESPN’s success.”
The company has been dealing with new revelations that there has been alleged gender discrimination in the work place, a sexual harassment lawsuit has been filed against certain personalities that’s resulted in their suspensions and of course the Jemele Hill incident where she had rather harsh words for the President of the United States.
Skipper was named the president of ESPN at the beginning of 2012 and had been with the company since 1997 when he joined as senior vice president and general manager of ESPN the Magazine. Skipper’s predecessor in George Bodenheimer has agreed to take over as the acting chairman of the company for the next 90 days to help Disney chairman and chief executive officer Bob Iger find Skipper’s replacement. Bodenheimer was the president at ESPN from 1998 to 2011.