Blizzard Entertainment president J. Allen Brack has stepped down from his role with the company, following news that Activision Blizzard is being sued by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) over workplace malpractice.
On Tuesday, August 3, an email was sent to Blizzard staff announcing the major change in leadership, with Brack having joined Blizzard way back in January 2006.
“Starting today, J. Allen Brack will be stepping down as the leader of the studio, and Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra will co-lead Blizzard moving forward,” the statement read, before delving into the wealth of experience Jen and Mike share between them.
“Both leaders are deeply dedicated to all 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.”
This seems to be a direct reference to the lawsuit, news of which broke on July 22, which describes Activision Blizzard as having a “pervasive frat boy culture,” as well as pointing to the sad story of a woman taking her own life after facing harassment within the company.
In a press release, Activision Blizzard said that Brack is leaving to “explore new opportunities,” with no announcement yet as to what exactly is coming for the former president of the company.
After the lawsuit became public knowledge, Activision Blizzard employees staged a walkout in response to the company’s handling of it, with CEO Bobby Kotick later apologizing for their “tone-deaf” response.