Activision Blizzard appoints former Trump official as its chief administrative officer

Activision Blizzard's Santa Monica studio
(Image credit: Activision Blizzard)

This article has been updated to include a statement from Activision Blizzard.

Activision Blizzard has hired another Republican alum to its leadership team, with the appointment of Trump administration member Brian Bulatao as chief administrative officer. 

Earlier this week, the publisher announced the promotion of Armin Zerza as chief financial officer (via BusinessWire). But Bulatao, who joins Activision following a previous role under US secretary of state Mike Pompeo, comes aboard with notably less fanfare—his hiring revealed via company-wide internal emails acquired by Kotaku.

"Brian is a rare talent, and the perfect fit for Activision Blizzard; his unparalleled combination of business, military, and government experience makes him ideally suited to accelerate our organizational transformation and deliver on great opportunities for future growth," Activision CEO Bobby Kotick wrote in the email.

Bulatao's hiring comes mere weeks after Activision appointed Frances F. Townsend, a Bush-era counterterrorism advisor who notoriously defended the CIA's use of torture, as its chief compliance officer. Bulatao himself has been described as a "bully" and "Mike Pompeo's attack dog" by a Business Insider report into his management of the State Department.

Kotick's email reportedly makes note of Bulatao's role in "leading the State Department’s talent, diversity, and inclusion efforts," despite the Trump administration freezing said efforts with an executive order last September.

Bulatao's role at Activision will grant him management of "Corporate Social Responsibility" activities across the company, as well as the publisher's Call Of Duty Endowment charity for veterans. 

In a statement to PC Gamer, an Activision spokesperson said of the hiring: "Brian’s unparalleled success in the business world and distinguished career as an Infantry Captain in the US Army make him an excellent addition to our leadership team, to lead our organization toward future growth. We believe in honouring the legacy and extraordinary sacrifices of veterans, and we recognize and appreciate the expertise and rigor they bring to everything they do."

Natalie Clayton
Features Producer

20 years ago, Nat played Jet Set Radio Future for the first time, and she's not stopped thinking about games since. Joining PC Gamer in 2020, she comes from three years of freelance reporting at Rock Paper Shotgun, Waypoint, VG247 and more. Embedded in the European indie scene and a part-time game developer herself, Nat is always looking for a new curiosity to scream about—whether it's the next best indie darling, or simply someone modding a Scotmid into Black Mesa. She also unofficially appears in Apex Legends under the pseudonym Horizon.