Champion of People
Sit down and talk to Josh D’Amaro, chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, for an hour, and you soon realize being an advocate for people is his passion. The well-being of Disney’s cast members is something D’Amaro takes personally—and it’s evident. Ask him to share a story, and he details how cast members will approach him with tears of joy in their eyes, grateful for the ability to get a fully paid college education.
“You want to feel pride?” D’Amaro asks. “That is pride right in front of you.”
Disney Aspire offers 100% free tuition to eligible members of Disney’s full-time and part-time hourly employees after 90 days of service.
“Any cast member, anywhere in this organization—whether you’re on Main Street, U.S.A. selling balloons or you’re a finance leader sitting in one of our buildings around the world—you can go get an education and you can study whatever you want,” D’Amaro says of Aspire. “The next question that comes out is, ‘Well, jeez, you must really lock him in then for the long term?’ No, we don’t.”
Disney Aspire launched in 2018 with an investment of $150 million to grow careers at Disney or in fields outside of the company.
“Why is that important? Because our communities get stronger, and when communities see this and our partners see this, they’ll want to emulate it.”