Charita Carter is the first African-American woman to become an executive producer of Walt Disney Imagineering. Carter was tapped into the position as part of Disney’s move to become more inclusive and diverse.
In her new portfolio, she is in charge of creating, collaborating, and developing Disney Parks experiences from ideation to execution, according to Forbes. Her rise to an executive producer is no tokenism.
Before her new role, she held the position of senior creative producer and development manager of Walt Disney Imagineering‘s Scenic Illusion team. Imagineering ” is the branch of the Disney company that comes up with the ideas and the execution for [its] parks, for [its] cruise ships, and for [its]shows.”
In her position, she led the team to develop new applications and techniques to “furnish designers efficiently with multiple storytelling capabilities.” They granted more than 20 patents to the Walt Disney Company and implemented attractions for Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and Tokyo Disney Resort under her watch.
“She also produced the critically-acclaimed Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway attraction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the premier ride-through in the history of the parks to feature Mickey and Minnie Mouse,” according to Forbes.
Before her Imagineering career, she worked as a senior accountant at Disney. She also worked as the Creative Development Division’s finance manager and strategic business partner and later served in the role of Blue Sky Strategic Initiatives development manager and then advanced to show producer.
In sum, she has worked with Walt Disney Imagineering for 25 years. Before coming to Disney, she worked as a general ledger accountant. And when the company she was working for was bought out, her friend who was working with Disney Imagineering encouraged her to apply for one of their accounting positions.
On the day of her interview, she overheard the accounting director tell two people who were working in the accounting department that they were making a transition to creative, which sounded unorthodox to her.
“When I came to interview, the accounting director asked me to hang out for a minute because he was running a little late. Of course, I would hang out all day because I was looking for a job. But I was able to listen to the conversation that he was trying to wrap up, and it was two individuals who had worked in finance, and they were transitioning to creative,” she said.
“I thought that was the most bizarre thing I had ever heard of, but little did I know, within about ten years, that would be partially my story.”
Today, Carter is the team leader and producer of [Princess] Tiana to both Disneyland and Magic Kingdom. Carter, who grew up in Southern California, has a degree in Accounting from California State University Northridge.