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CORRECTED-Disney names former Pentagon press secretary as corporate affairs head

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(Corrects spelling of Morrell's name in paragraphs 2, 4 and 6)

Dec 7 (Reuters) - Walt Disney Co on Tuesday named former Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell to the newly created position of chief corporate affairs officer.

Morrell is currently the executive vice-president of communications and advocacy at oil and gas company BP and will assume his new role on Jan. 24, Disney said.

He will also hold the title of Senior Executive Vice President, replacing Zenia Mucha who will be retiring from Disney shortly after the year-end.

Morrell started out as a journalist, covering the presidential campaign of Bill Clinton in 1992 and later became a White House correspondent for ABC News from 2004 to 2007.

From 2007 to 2011, he served as Pentagon press secretary and as the chief spokesman for Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates and the U.S. military.

Morrell's appointment to Disney comes during a year of hallmark executive changes for the entertainment giant.

Bob Iger, who stepped down as Disney's CEO in 2020 after 15 years in the role, will leave the company by the end of this month. The Mouse House also recently tapped Susan Arnold to become its first woman chair.

Several other Disney executives have announced plans to leave by the end of 2021, including Studios head Alan Horn, president and chief creative officer of Disney Branded Television, Gary Marsh, and company general counsel Alan Braverman. (Reporting by Tiyashi Datta in Bengaluru; Editing by Ramakrishnan M.)