WASHINGTON (April 30, 2014)—The National Geographic Society announced a reorganization today that aligns its work around three main areas of focus: inspire, illuminate and teach — marking a shift to better align its diverse activities around its mission “To inspire people to care about the planet.” The move was announced by Gary Knell, who joined the 126-year-old global nonprofit as president and CEO in January of this year.
“I believe that we fulfill the mission of this extraordinary institution when we find new and compelling ways to engage the public. This new simplified organization structure is built around our purpose, rather than our media platforms, and will focus us on the outcomes that truly advance our mission to inspire people to care about the planet while increasing our speed and effectiveness in our rapidly changing world. I’m especially pleased that we can build on our past successes with a wonderfully talented group of dedicated individuals and a more aligned, accountable team approach,” Knell said in making the announcement that reflects new and expanded roles for a number of senior executives. The changes are effective immediately.
Inspire, Illuminate and Teach
Terry Garcia has been named chief science and exploration officer, building on the mandate to expand the Society’s science and exploration work. He will continue to lead public engagement programs, such as National Geographic Live, Museums and Exhibitions, and other location-based initiatives currently in development.
Declan Moore has been named chief media officer, in charge of all content creation activities. His role includes managing a more centralized revenue operation and oversight of the Society’s evolving membership strategy. Chris Johns has assumed a new role as chief content officer, reporting to Moore. Johns will be working closely with National Geographic Television, led by Brooke Runnette, and the National Geographic Channels, led by Courteney Monroe (U.S.) and Ward Platt (International). Susan Goldberg has been named editor in chief of National Geographic magazine, which includes oversight of print, digital and daily news operations. Goldberg will report to Johns.
Melina Bellows becomes chief education officer, with a portfolio that includes the highly successful NG Kids’ franchises, School Publishing, the National Geographic Education Foundation and the National Geographic Bee.
Office of the President
Terry Adamson will continue to serve as chief legal officer and special adviser, reporting to the president and CEO, and in his role as secretary of the board of trustees, facilitating the governance of the Society. He will also continue overseeing the growth of International Publishing and assumes oversight of Standards and Practices, Records Administration and Internal Audit.
Tara Bunch, named chief of staff in the Office of the President earlier this year, continues in that capacity and will take on management of key cross-divisional initiatives.
Betty Hudson will expand her role as chief communications officer, connecting cross-Society oversight of organizational brand and reputation management, which encompasses public relations, including internal communications, social media and brand stewardship. She will also oversee philanthropic development, which will be managed day-to-day by Bill Warren, senior vice president of Development, who will work to expand the Society’s global philanthropic base.
Tony Sabló has been named chief talent and diversity officer, reporting to Knell. In addition, Sabló will continue to oversee Facilities, Operations and Services and the Medical Unit.
Tracie Winbigler has been named chief operations officer, a newly defined role for the National Geographic Society, overseeing an internal collection of business support services that include human resources, business and legal affairs, finance, technology, corporate strategic planning and business development as well as sourcing and production. Mike Ulica has been promoted to chief financial officer, reporting to Winbigler.
About the National Geographic Society
Founded in 1888, the National Geographic Society is one of the world’s largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. With a mission to inspire people to care about the planet, the member-supported Society offers a community for members to get closer to explorers, connect with other members and help make a difference. The Society reaches more than 500 million people worldwide each month through its media platforms, products and events. National Geographic has funded more than 11,000 scientific research, conservation and exploration projects and supports an education program promoting geographic literacy. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com.