Blizzard president J. Allen Brack steps down following harassment lawsuit

J. Allen Brack, the head of Blizzard Home entertainment, has actually stepped down from his position as president, the business revealed Tuesday. Activision Blizzard informed personnel Tuesday early morning that Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra will “co-lead” the business.

Activision Blizzard staff members went out of work recently to oppose management reaction to a suit that declared “constant sexual harassment” and sexism at the business.

Oneal formerly functioned as executive vice president of advancement, while Ybarra led platform and innovation at the business. Oneal likewise formerly led Vicarious Visions, which Blizzard obtained in January. Ybarra was formerly at Microsoft, acting as business vice president for Xbox Live and Xbox Video Game Pass. He signed up with Blizzard in 2019.

“Both leaders are deeply committed to all of our employees; to the work ahead to ensure Blizzard is the safest, most welcoming workplace possible for women, and people of any gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or background; to upholding and reinforcing our values; and to rebuilding your trust,” a Blizzard representative stated in the declaration. “With their many years of industry experience and deep commitment to integrity and inclusivity, Jen and Mike will lead Blizzard with care, compassion, and a dedication to excellence. You’ll hear more from Jen and Mike soon.”

Brack provided a declaration released on the Blizzard site.

I am positive that Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra will supply the management Blizzard requires to recognize its complete capacity and will speed up the rate of modification. I expect they will do so with enthusiasm and interest which they can be depended lead with the greatest levels of stability and dedication to the parts of our culture that make Blizzard so unique.

Brack’s departure from the studio comes not long after its moms and dad business, Activision Blizzard, was taken legal action against by the California Department of Fair Work and Real Estate (DFEH) for producing a “frat boy culture” that enabled gender-based discrimination and unwanted sexual advances to multiply. The claim declares that Brack learnt about the habits due to the fact that he had actually gotten grievances straight, which he did little to stop it beyond disciplinary actions that totaled up to “a slap on the wrist.”

A 15-year Blizzard veteran, Brack had actually been the business’s president because October 2018, when then-president and -CEO Mike Morhaime chose to step down and pass the baton to him. Prior to his ascension to studio head, Brack served for several years as a leader of the Wow advancement group. Morhaime, who co-founded Blizzard in 1991, explained Brack at the time of his promo as “an inspiring leader who has shown unwavering commitment to Blizzard’s community.”

Instantly following the claim, Activision Blizzard made a main declaration in which it stated the claim consisted of “distorted, and in many cases false, descriptions of Blizzard’s past.” Internally, numerous executives released declarations; Brack, in among these letters, called the accusations “extremely troubling.”

Activision Blizzard executive and previous George W. Bush homeland security consultant Frances Townsend called the claim “truly meritless and irresponsible” in a declaration that’s because been slammed by present and previous personnel. Countless Activision Blizzard staff members signed a letter requesting for Townsend to step down as the executive sponsor of the ladies’s network. Following the letter, Activision Blizzard staff members in California and in other places went out of work in demonstration of management reaction.

Townsend later on tweeted about “the Problem with Whistleblowing,” a story released in The Atlantic in July. The curious timing for the tweet — right away following significant whistleblowing at Activision Blizzard — did not sit well with present and previous staff members, who reacted in turn with criticism. Townsend supposedly started obstructing present staff members speaking up versus her.

Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.