August 11, 2008

EA CEO Joins Board of Councilors

John Riccitiello To Help Guide School

By John Zollinger

John Riccitiello, chief executive officer of Electronic Arts, Inc. (NASDAQ: ERTS), has joined the USC School of Cinematic Arts Board of Councilors. Riccitiello will play a key role in keeping the school’s artistic and academic initiatives at the cutting edge.

Joining members of the Board of Councilors such as George Lucas, Steven Spielberg and Robert Zemeckis, Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello helps guide the future of the School of Cinematic Arts.
“Since its creation, the Board of Councilors has provided invaluable guidance and support to the school,” Dean Elizabeth M. Daley said. “With his unique experience in both electronic media and as one of the nation’s top corporate leaders, John will continue to help the school stay at the forefront of the art form and industry,” Daley added.
“EA is proud of our ongoing involvement with USC, and I’m truly honored to join this group,” said Riccitiello. “Interactive entertainment is an art form like film or literature—a vibrant new format that is attracting a new generation of artists and launching great careers.”
The 25-member board offers insight on industry trends, developing resources and setting long-term goals for the advancement of the school. In addition to Riccitiello, its members include: Chairman Frank Price, Frank Biondi, Jr., John Calley, Barry Diller, Lee Gabler, David Geffen, Brian T. Grazer, Brad Grey, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Alan Levine, George Lucas, Don Mattrick, Bill M. Mechanic, Barry Meyer, Sidney Poitier, Barney Rosenzweig, Scott Sassa, Steven Spielberg, John Wells, Jim Wiatt, Paul Junger Witt, David L. Wolper, Robert Zemeckis and Laura Ziskin.
Riccitiello served previously as EA’s president and chief operating officer responsible for global publishing, online and other corporate functions before leaving the company in 2004 to become a founding partner and managing director of Elevation Partners, a private equity partnership focused on the media and entertainment sector. He also served on the Board of Directors of Forbes Media LLC. Riccitiello returned to EA as CEO in April of 2007.
Riccitiello and EA have been ardent proponents of fostering interactive entertainment programs at the university level. Through a unique collaboration between the School of Cinematic Arts and EA, USC students work directly with top EA game developers and publishing executives, both in the classroom and at EA’s studios. In addition, the company has spearheaded the creation of game development labs and classrooms at the school, and funded the Electronic Arts Endowed Faculty Chair, which was first held by EA’s former Chief Creative Officer Bing Gordon.