Blizzard president departs amid sex discrimination, harassment suit against company

Blizzard’s leadership is changing.

Angela Lang/CNET

Video game maker Activision Blizzard has been rocked by the California’s recent lawsuit alleging sex discrimination and sexual harassment and announced Tuesday that subsidiary Blizzard’s president is stepping down. J. Allen Brack is leaving “to pursue new opportunities,” the company said in a statement.

Former Vicarious Visions leader Jen Oneal and one-time Xbox executive Mike Ybarra will step up to co-lead the World of Warcraft developer. Oneal, the executive vice president of development at Blizzard, has overseen Blizzard games Diablo and Overwatch. Ybarra, the executive vice president and general manager of platform and technology at Blizzard, has been responsible for the game launcher. 

“I am confident that Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra will provide the leadership Blizzard needs to realize its full potential and will accelerate the pace of change,” Brack said in a statement. “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.”

In July, California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing filed a lawsuit, alleging that Activision Blizzard has been a “breeding ground for harassment and discrimination.” CEO Bobby Kotick has promised to change the company’s culture. Employees staged a walkout last week to demand change at the company.

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