Susan Arnold
Born (1954-03-08) March 8, 1954 (age 69)[1]
EmployerThe Walt Disney Company
PredecessorBob Iger (2012–2021)

Susan E. Arnold (born March 8, 1954) is an American business executive who formerly served as the chairman of The Walt Disney Company.

Life and career

Susan E. Arnold graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts degree, and from the University of Pittsburgh with a Master of Business Administration degree.[2]

She is an operating executive of The Carlyle Group, since September 2013. She is based in New York. Arnold has served on the board of directors of The Walt Disney Company since 2007,[3] as well as the Carlyle portfolio investments company NBTY, The Nature's Bounty Co. She has also been a member of the Board of Directors of McDonald's Co. since 2008. In 2004 she became Vice Chairman of Procter & Gamble and President of the company in 2007. She had joined Procter & Gamble in 1980 and held several management and marketing positions before becoming the manager of Procter & Gamble's cosmetics business in Canada in 1990. In 1999, she assumed global responsibility for Procter & Gamble's beauty business, thereby becoming the first woman to reach a president-level position in the company. She retired from Procter & Gamble on September 1, 2009. According to Forbes, Susan Arnold got her start as a brand assistant on the Dawn/Ivory Snow Group.[4][5][6]

Since 2002, she has been listed on Fortune magazine's 50 Most Powerful Women in Business as #7 in 2008. In 2004 and 2005, she was listed on the Wall Street Journal's 50 Women to Watch. She was listed multiple times on the Forbes list of The World's Most Powerful Women and in 2005 she was #16 on Forbes' The World's 100 Most Powerful Women list. She served for several years on the executive committee of Catalyst, a nonprofit organization working toward the advancement of women in business.[4][5] In June 2022, she was recognized by the International Hospitality Institute on the Global 100 in Hospitality as one of the 100 Most Powerful People in Global Hospitality.[7]

She is openly lesbian.[8][9]


On December 1, 2021,[10][3] Arnold was appointed to replace Bob Iger as chair of the board at The Walt Disney Company and became the first woman to be appointed to this position in the 98-year history of Disney.[11][12] She was elected chair on December 31, 2021. [13] On January 11, 2023, Disney announced that Arnold would no longer serve as the board's chair after the next annual shareholder meeting and would be replaced by former Nike CEO Mark Parker.[14]


  1. ^ "Susan E. Arnold".
  2. ^ "Susan E Arnold, Walt Disney Co: Profile and Biography - Bloomberg Markets". Retrieved 2022-09-10.
  3. ^ a b "Susan Arnold Named Chairman of the Board of The Walt Disney Company, Effective December 31". Walt Disney Company. December 1, 2021. Retrieved December 13, 2021.
  4. ^ a b "The Walt Disney Company - Susan Arnold Biography". Retrieved September 27, 2007.
  5. ^ a b "Susan Arnold, The Most Powerful Women -". Archived from the original on January 18, 2008. Retrieved September 27, 2007.
  6. ^ "The Walt Disney Company - News from the Disney Board - May 01, 2007". Retrieved September 27, 2007.
  7. ^ Mix, Pulse (2022-08-01). "Dr Jeffrey Obomeghie and Dupe Olusola among the 100 most powerful people in global hospitality". Pulse Nigeria. Retrieved 2022-08-03.
  8. ^ Rhiza Dizon, 'Sears or Playboy May Get Gay CEO', The Advocate, March 10, 2009 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-03-15. Retrieved 2009-03-11.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ Marc Gunther, 'Queer Inc.: How Corporate America fell in love with gays and lesbians. It's a movement.', CNN, November 30, 2006 [1]
  10. ^ Bursztynsky, Jessica (1 December 2021). "Disney names Susan Arnold as board chair, replacing Bob Iger". CNBC. Retrieved 13 December 2021.
  11. ^ "Disney appoints woman as chair for first time in 98-year history". BBC News. 2 December 2021.
  12. ^ Palmeri, Christopher (3 December 2021). "Susan Arnold: After 98 years, Walt Disney gets first woman chair". Business Standard India.
  13. ^ "Susan Arnold Named Chairman of the Board of The Walt Disney Company, Effective December 31". Walt Disney Company. December 1, 2021. Retrieved December 13, 2021.
  14. ^ Galley, Jackie (January 11, 2023). "Disney Appoints Mark Parker As Chairman of the Board, Replacing Susan Arnold". Retrieved January 14, 2023.
Business positions Preceded byBob Iger Disney chairman 2021-2023 Succeeded byMark Parker