The President of Blizzard, J. Allen Brack, will be stepping down from his position effective immediately according to a statement put out by Activision Blizzard on Tuesday. Taking Brack’s place will be Jen O’Neal and Mike Ybarra, however, they will not be given the title of President, but instead are being named “co-leaders” of Blizzard.
Brack released the following statement following the announcement of his departure:
“I am confident that Jen O’neal and Mike Ybarra will provide the leadership Blizzard needs to realize its full potential and will accelerate the pace of change. I anticipate they will do so with passion and enthusiasm and that they can be trusted to lead with the highest levels of integrity and commitment to the components of our culture that make Blizzard so special.”
Brack’s step down comes after a recent employee walkout where employees withheld their labor in protest of how the company was handling a lawsuit filed by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing. The walkout also included demands for improved working conditions at Activision Blizzard specifically mentioning “women of color and transgender women, nonbinary people, and other marginalized groups that are vulnerable to gender discrimination not being hired fairly for new roles when compared to men.” The lawsuit filed against Activision Blizzard describes a “frat boy” culture with multiple allegations of sexual assault and discrimination against employees.
Blizzard is most well known for developing World of Warcraft, but it has also developed other popular titles such as Overwatch, Starcraft, and Diablo. Their parent company, Activision Blizzard, is most well known for being the publishers of the Call of Duty franchise.