Cheryl Boone Isaacs: Film Academy President

Cheryl Boone Isaacs was voted as new president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. A former marketing executive, Isaacs is the first African-American to hold the title.

Isaacs will retain the position for at least one year. At the end of the first year she will be eligible for four more consecutive terms as Academy president.

As reported by MSN, the Academy’s Board of Governors announced their decision on Tuesday evening. Isaacs is one of 14 women on the AMPAS’ board.

Isaacs has been a member of the Academy’s Public Relations branch for many years. As a publicity executive, she has campaigned for numerous hit films, including The Artist, The King’s Speech, and Forrest Gump.

Cheryl Boone Isaacs has worked her way through several positions with the Academy. She has served as secretary, treasurer, vice president, and first vice president. In her election as president, Isaacs received more than 50 percent of the votes.

Isaacs will replace current Academy president Hawk Koch. Koch only served one year as president. However, he was ineligible for another year as he served a total of nine consecutive years on the board.

Two other women, Bette Davis and Fay Kanin, have served as Academy President. Davis reportedly resigned her position after two months. Kanin held the position for four years. Cheryl Boone Isaacs is the first woman to hold the title since the 1980s.

As discussed at Oscars.org, the first Academy Awards ceremony took place at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel in 1929. The very first Academy President, Douglas Fairbanks, hosted the ceremony.

The Academy Awards were first televised in 1953. They were broadcast in color beginning in 1966.

There were only three times in history when the ceremony was not broadcast as scheduled. The awards were postponed in 1938 due to a flood, in 1968 due to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s death, and in 1981 following an assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan.

As the new Academy President, Cheryl Boone Isaacs will be tasked with producing the January 16, 2014 Academy Awards ceremony.

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