E. Cardon Walker, Disney's Corporate Leader from 1971-1983, Who Established EPCOT, Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Channel, Dies at Age 89 Succeeded Co-Founder Roy O. Disney
BURBANK, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 30, 2005--E. Cardon "Card" Walker, who led The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS
) for nearly a decade and a-half following the death of co-founder Roy O. Disney, passed away at his La Canada home on Monday, November 29, at the age of 89.
Walker rose through the ranks at Disney, starting in the mailroom in 1938 and eventually becoming executive vice president and chief operating officer following the death of Walt Disney. Walker worked closely with Walt and Roy Disney on memorable projects, such as It's a Small World, Meet Mr. Lincoln, Pirates of the Caribbean, the Haunted Mansion, "101 Dalmatians," "The Jungle Book," "Mary Poppins" and the purchase and development of the 28,000 acres in Central Florida that became Walt Disney World.
In 1971, he was named president of the company, in 1976, he added the duties of chief executive officer and, in 1980, he was elected chairman of the board. Under his leadership, the company expanded with such major projects as the development of EPCOT at Walt Disney World, Tokyo Disneyland and the creation of the Disney Channel in the then-nascent cable industry.
"I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Card Walker," said Robert Iger, president and CEO of The Walt Disney Company. "Card was instrumental in keeping Disney strong and growing in the critical years that followed the passing of founders Walt and Roy Disney. There is little question that, were it not for Card Walker's vision and leadership, Disney would not be what it is today."