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Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner dies two days after being fired to take medical leave for prostate cancer

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Brian D. Goldner, Hasbro’s former chairman and CEO, died Tuesday, just one day after stepping down to take medical leave to treat prostate cancer.

The head of the famous toy maker, 58, had already battled cancer in 2014 and was not treated until 2020.

Goldner released a statement yesterday discussing his decision to step down.

“After careful consideration, I’ve decided to go on medical leave to focus on my health,” Goldner says. “I am confident that the company will be in the capable hands of Rich Stoddart as interim CEO, our highly experienced management team and the best employees in the company. Hasbro’s future couldn’t be brighter as we continue to ‘Supercharge the Blueprint’ and build the world’s leading gaming and entertainment company.”

Goldner joined the famed toy company in 2000 and became CEO in 2008. In 2015, he was named chairman of the company’s board of directors. The company thanks him for bringing them worldwide and expanding their brand beyond toys to television, movies and digital gaming.

One of the biggest expansions of the Hasbro brand under Goldner includes turning Transformers into one of modern cinema’s biggest franchises, as well as GI Joe and Power Rangers.

Hasbro also acquired entertainment studio eOne in 2019 under Goldner’s supervision.

Brian D. Goldner, Hasbro’s former chairman and CEO (pictured left) died Tuesday, just one day after stepping down to take medical leave to treat prostate cancer

The famed toymaker's head, 58, had already battled cancer in 2014 and was not treated until 2020

The famed toymaker’s head, 58, had already battled cancer in 2014 and was not treated until 2020

The company thanks Goldner for taking them worldwide and expanding their brand beyond toys to television, movies and digital gaming.

The company thanks Goldner for taking them worldwide and expanding their brand beyond toys to television, movies and digital gaming.

One of the biggest expansions of the Hasbro brand under Goldner includes turning Transformers into one of modern cinema's biggest franchises, as well as GI Joe and Power Rangers.

One of the biggest expansions of the Hasbro brand under Goldner includes turning Transformers into one of modern cinema’s biggest franchises, as well as GI Joe and Power Rangers.

The pinnacle of his pioneering strategy was the 2019 acquisition of independent entertainment studio eOne. Mr. Goldner served on the ViacomCBS Board of Directors and chaired the Compensation Committee.

Stoddart, who has been with the company since 2020, reflected on the loss of his former boss in a statement released Thursday.

“Since joining the company more than two decades ago, Brian has been the heart and soul of Hasbro,” Stoddart said. “As a charismatic and passionate leader in both the gaming and entertainment industries, Brian’s work brought joy and laughter to children and families around the world. His visionary leadership, kindness and generosity endeared him to the Hasbro community and everyone he touched.

“On behalf of the Hasbro family, we offer our deepest, sincere condolences to his wife, daughter and the entire family.”

Goldner was also remembered by Edward M. Philip, leading independent director of the company’s board of directors.

Brian’s passing is a huge loss to Hasbro and the world. Brian was widely admired and respected in the industry, and during his more than twenty years with Hasbro, his inspiring leadership and exuberance left an indelible mark on everything and everyone he touched. A mentor and friend to so many, his passion and creativity took Hasbro to new heights.”

Goldner is survived by his wife Barbara, a social worker

Goldner is survived by his wife Barbara, a social worker

Goldner's daughter, Brooke, an actress, who ironically worked on the My Little Pony cartoon series, an adaptation of a Hasbro toy

Goldner’s daughter, Brooke, an actress, who ironically worked on the My Little Pony cartoon series, an adaptation of a Hasbro toy

“Our love and thoughts are with his wife, daughter and family at this extremely sad time.”

Goldner is survived by his wife Barbara, a social worker, and his daughter Brooke, an actress, who ironically worked on the My Little Pony cartoon series, an adaptation of a Hasbro toy. The company said the Goldners were “passionate advocates for improving health care systems for vulnerable members of society.”

Hasbro is based in Rhode Island, and Goldner received tributes from both the governor and the secretary of state on Tuesday.

“Brian Goldner was a bold thinker, an innovator, a remarkable CEO and a person who always stood up for our community,” wrote Governor Dan McKee. “He will be sorely missed by everyone.”

“Sad day in our state,” wrote Rhode Island Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea. “Brian Goldner has provided many of us with happy moments of fun and games.”

Hasbro is based in Rhode Island and Goldner received tributes from both the governor and the secretary of state on Tuesday

Hasbro is based in Rhode Island and Goldner received tributes from both the governor and the secretary of state on Tuesday

“Sad day in our state,” wrote Rhode Island Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea. ‘Brian Goldner has brought happy times of fun and games to so many of us’

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