After two years in the role and 9 total with the organization, Shawn Finnie has resigned as executive vice president, Member Relations and Awards for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, TheWrap has confirmed.
He was promoted into the role in June, 2021; his last day with the organization was July 13. Prior to serving in the position, Finnie was a longstanding and well-respected member of the organization, having served in a variety of roles and frequently promoted over his tenure. During his time with Member Relations and Awards, Finnie was also involved in the Academy’s DEI efforts and according to Variety, who first reported his resignation, he was specifically praised for his work by Rosie Perez.
Finnie’s exit comes just over 2 weeks after that of the film academy’s executive vice president of impact and inclusion, Jeanell English, who quit after just one year in the job. Finnie and English are just 2 of the Black Hollywood executives who have stepped down or have been laid off the last month.
The others would be Vernā Myers, who exited Netflix, Latondra Newton who departed the Walt Disney Company and Karen Horne, who was laid off by Warner Bros. Discovery.
So far there hasn’t been enough information made public to conclude anything but that these exits are coincidental, but the timing has understandably drawn attention from within and without Hollywood. On Thursday, the California Legislative Black Caucus held a press conferences calling for the studios to explain the matter.