Asif Sadiq has been appointed chief global diversity, equity and inclusion officer at Warner Bros. Discovery.
Sadiq — who previously served as head of diversity, equity and inclusion for international at WBD predecessor company WarnerMedia — will lead the company’s global DE&I policy and strategy team, expanding on initiatives from legacy companies Discovery Inc. as well as WarnerMedia. He reports jointly to David Zaslav, WBD chief executive officer, Adria Alpert Romm, WBD chief people and culture officer.
“Having diversity of thought, ideas and experiences is so critical to the success of any business, especially a creative company like Warner Bros. Discovery,” Zaslav said. “We want our employees to be able to thrive as their authentic selves, while using the power of storytelling to not only entertain audiences around the world, but also open minds and inspire action. And I can think of no better leader than Asif to ensure that we champion the most thoughtful and impactful diversity, equity and inclusion program.”
In his previous role at WarnerMedia, Sadiq helped drive the company’s internal and content-focused initiatives to expand the level of diversity throughout the company. Prior to his time with WarnerMedia, Sadiq held senior executive positions at Adidas, Telegraph Media Group, EY Financial Services and the City of London Police.
Sadiq will chair WBD’s newly formed business diversity council, a senior advisory board comprised of international leaders from the company’s sports, games, technology, revenue and corporate groups. Alongside Sadiq, the council will assist in developing and instituting company-wide diversity programs for employees.
“I am so proud of the work we began at WarnerMedia and am thrilled to join David, Adria, and Warner Bros. Discovery to accelerate the diversity mission I believe in so strongly,” Sadiq said. “Companies that get DE&I right are more successful and have deeper relationships with their employees, consumers and partners. In other words, this isn’t just the right thing to do, it also makes smart business sense and presents a great opportunity. I look forward to making a measurable and sustained impact with employees, on the screen, in our communities, and for our business.”
Additionally, Warner Bros. Discovery is establishing a creative diversity council, which includes top WBD executives Channing Dungey (Warner Bros. TV Group), Pamela Abdy and Michael DeLuca (Warner Bros. Pictures), Casey Bloys (HBO) and Kathleen Finch (Discovery and Turner cablers).
As Discovery and WarnerMedia came together in the merger completed in April, the newly created company has faced some outside criticism for a relative lack of diversity among its top corporate officers and Zaslav lieutenants and the absence of Latino representation on its board of directors.