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Disney CEO Bob Iger, wife Willow Bay establish Ithaca College scholarship for diversity in media

By Eric Reinhardt

Date:

Robert Iger, CEO of Walt Disney Company and an Ithaca College graduate, as seen on the cover of his recently released memoir, “The Ride of a Lifetime.” Both Iger and his wife, Willow Bay, dean of the University of Southern California

ITHACA, N.Y. — Disney CEO Bob Iger and his wife, Willow Bay, have donated $1 million to establish the Iger-Bay Endowed Scholarship at Ithaca College.

The funding is in “support of academic excellence and the institution’s goal of becoming a national model for colleges committed to the values of diversity, equity and inclusion,” Ithaca College said in a news release.

Iger is a 1973 graduate of the college’s Roy H. Park School of Communications.

The scholarship, which is funded through proceeds from sales of Iger’s recently released memoir, “The Ride of a Lifetime,” will be awarded to incoming students in the Park School of Communications.

Those students must demonstrate financial need; have declared a major of journalism, sport media or documentary studies; and “hail from communities that are historically underrepresented and underserved” in these fields at Ithaca College and nationally.

Willow Bay, dean of the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and holder of the Walter H. Annenberg Chair in Communication, in USC Annenberg’s Media Center. Bay, and husband Robert Iger, CEO of Walt Disney Company and an Ithaca College graduate, have donated $1 million to establish the Iger-Bay Endowed Scholarship at Ithaca College in support of diversity in media. (Photo credit: USC Annenberg via Ithaca College website)

Bay, who is dean of the University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, had a prominent broadcast career including reporting and anchoring for ABC News’ Good Morning America/Sunday and serving as a correspondent for Good Morning America and World News Weekend. The first woman to co-anchor CNN’s flagship daily financial news program Moneyline News Hour, Bay also anchored Business Unusual and Pinnacle, the network’s weekend business news programs. At NBC, she co-hosted NBA Inside Stuff, the NBA’s weekly magazine show, and served as a correspondent for the Today Show morning program, per her biography page on the website of the USC Annenberg School.

“I speak for the entire IC community when I share how incredibly appreciative we are of Bob Iger and Willow Bay for their tremendous generosity,” Ithaca College President Shirley Collado, said in the school’s release. “Their commitment to supporting and affirming underrepresented experiences across the educational and media landscapes is unparalleled.”

Contact Reinhardt at ereinhardt@cnybj.com

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