Cheryl Boone Isaacs has been elected president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, becoming the first African-American and third woman to lead the organization that awards the Oscars every year.
Boone Isaacs, a marketing executive who currently heads CBI Enterprises, was voted in by the board of governors Tuesday night. She has consulted on films like The Artist, The King’s Speech and Precious. She has also served as executive vice president of worldwide publicity at Paramount Pictures and as president of theatrical marketing for New Line Cinema. Earlier this year, she produced the 4th annual Governors Awards for the Academy.
Boone Isaacs is currently serving her 21st year as a governor and has represented the public relations branch for the board.
The 86-year-old Academy has long been an overwhelmingly white and male institution. A study by the Los Angeles Times in 2012 found that Oscar voters were nearly 94% Caucasian and 77% male. The two women who served as president of the group before Boone Isaacs were actress Bette Davis, who held the position for two months in 1941, and screenwriter Fay Kanin, who served from 1979-83.
Boone Isaacs will replace Hawk Koch, who left the board because of term limits after serving nine years. One of her first duties as president will be to select a host for the March 2 Oscar telecast, according to Entertainment Weekly.