News Corp. Names Arthur Bochner Its Next Chief Communications Officer

He’s replacing the retiring Jim Kennedy at the newspaper and book publisher

A middle-aged light-skinned man poses in front of plants
Arthur Bochner (News Corp.)

News Corp. announced Thursday that Arthur Bochner will succeed Jim Kennedy as chief communications officer and executive vice president for the newspaper and book publisher. Kennedy’s been with the company for the past decade, starting with News Corp. in 2013.

Before this new role, Bochner oversaw strategic communications for The Walt Disney Company and spent nearly a decade with the company. He’d worked in both consumer products and theme parks for Disney, as well as serving as chief of staff in Disney’s CEO office. Before Disney, Bochner worked in communications at Bloomberg, Citigroup and FD Public Affairs.

“Arthur has vast and valuable experience at the highest levels of business and government, which will enable him to play a vital role in News Corp.’s continuing growth,” News Corp. chief executive Robert Thomson said in a statement. “With a strategic sensibility, savvy messaging skills, and a collaborative character, Arthur is a worthy successor to our friend and colleague, Jim Kennedy, as he transitions to a well-deserved retirement this year.”

Bochner’s set to start with News Corp. this month, working on the transition with Kennedy and his team.

Kennedy’s upcoming retirement was announced last October. He was the first person in the chief communications officer role since this version of the company was spun out in 2013, splitting from 21st Century Fox, which controlled the company’s media and broadcasting properties before being acquired by Disney.

Before working for News Corp., Kennedy worked as a spokesperson and speechwriter, including for Sony Pictures and Sony Corporation of America. He also worked in the White House for President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore and ran communications for Hillary Clinton, Sen. Joe Lieberman and the Clinton Foundation.

“This post at News Corp. marks the longest I have spent in one job in one place, and that has only been possible thanks to the people I work for and with. I deeply appreciate having had the chance to serve Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch and my beneficent boss, Robert Thomson,” said Mr. Kennedy. “My small-but-mighty team and I are excited to partner with Arthur in the months ahead, and I know he will do a great job in spreading the news about News Corp. far and wide.”

“News Corp. is home to some of the most iconic brands in media, and I am thrilled to join the company’s leadership team at this exciting time of transformation,” Bochner said in a statement. “Few companies can match the reach and impact of News Corp., and it is an honor to help tell the company’s story. Jim has left big shoes to fill, and I am looking forward to collaborating with him during this transition.”

“Jim has been a constant source of sagacity and helped define the epochal issues confronting all media,” Thomson said of the outgoing Kennedy. “His commitment to protecting and projecting journalism and content creation was crucial as we engaged the digital platforms. News Corp. is the global leader in the digital debate and Jim has been absolutely crucial in fashioning our successful strategy.”

Bochner will move from L.A. to New York as part of his new position. Bochner is also an author of a business book for children, which he promoted on “The Tonight Show” with Jay Leno and on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

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