Amazon MGM Studios Global DEIA Head Latasha Gillespie Exits, Replaced by Amanda Baker-Lane

Latasha Gillespie, global head of DEIA for Amazon MGM Studios, Prime Video and Freevee, is leaving the company. Her exit was announced in an internal note from Amazon Studios head Jennifer Salke Tuesday afternoon.

“It is very bittersweet that I am announcing that I have decided to take the next step in my personal and professional journey,” Gillespie wrote to the company, noting her official exit is August 29. “After seven years of transformational work, I can’t help but reflect on the incredible journey and life-changing work I had the great fortune to do with the help of some really smart people.”

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She will be replaced by Amanda Baker-Lane, previously head of DEIA product and strategy.

“I feel really good about leaving the work of DEIA in amazing hands,” Gillespie continued. “I started this work as a team of one, but I am blessed to have a strong, competent team in place to carry the work forward. I could not be more proud and elated to pass the torch to Amanda. She is a strategic leader who will lead this work forward with brilliance, grace, and humility, because that’s who she is. I’m excited about my next chapter but will greatly miss working in the trenches alongside you every day. One thing will never change; we are forever linked by our incredible journey of making history and having fun along the way.”

Salke’s note also lauded Baker-Lane, writing that she has been part of Amazon for over nine years, and in the last two “has served a crucial role on Latasha’s leadership team as Head of Policy and Strategy and is the perfect candidate to take on this role.”

Salke also thanked Gillespie for her contributions, and added: “Her positive influence has been felt throughout the organization and extends to our creative partners who have relied on her for support and guidance. She innately understands the complex needs and dynamics of talent, executives and creatives and is relentless in her pursuit to make our industry a better, more inclusive place.”

Gillespie began her tenure at Amazon on the corporate side in 2017, when she was hired as head of global diversity and inclusion for the Seattle-based company. In late 2018 she moved to Amazon Studios and Prime Video, where she launched their Inclusion Playbook and became one of the entertainment industry’s most visible DEI execs. Her exit comes a year after last summer’s mass exodus of Hollywood chief diversity executives, all of them Black women.

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