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Patricia Vance

President of Entertainment Software Rating Board

As president of the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB), Ms. Vance is responsible for overseeing and enforcing the video game industry’s self-regulatory practices, which includes ensuring that video game consumers have effective tools with which to make educated purchase decisions. Amid the evolution of the video game industry and its expansion into new platforms such as mobile she has led the effort to gain adoption of ESRB ratings among mobile app providers, affording consumers a consistent and familiar standard for assessing the suitability of both video games and mobile apps for their children. 

Ms. Vance serves as the Chairperson of the International Age Rating Coalition (IARC), an organization incorporated in 2013 and governed by rating authorities from around the world to streamline the process for rating digital games and mobile apps. She is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI) as well as the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences (AIAS). She was also appointed to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s Online Safety and Technology Working Group (OSTWG), which was established by Congress to make recommendations on the protection of children on the Internet through education, labeling and parental control technology. Ms. Vance has also been named to Video Business’ Women Elite as well as Next-Generation’s Top 25 People of the Year. As an expert on interactive media, she has appeared frequently on TV and radio stations nationwide including ABC (World News Tonight, Good Morning America and ABC News Radio), NBC, CBS, FOX, CNN and Bloomberg; has been quoted in The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, Newsweek, Associated Press and Reuters; and has had articles published online by Good Housekeeping, Parenting and others. 

Before joining the ESRB in 2002, Ms. Vance spent 18 years at Disney/ABC, with responsibility for the development of a broad range of new media and market initiatives. As Senior Vice President, General Manager of the ABC Internet Group, she oversaw the operations and strategic development of ABC- branded news and entertainment related web sites, including (a joint venture with Starwave/Infoseek),,, (a partnership with Harpo Productions), ABC Online on AOL, Oprah Online on AOL, Mr. Showbiz (part of the ABC News joint venture with Starwave/Infoseek), and Disney’s While at ABC, Ms. Vance was also responsible for launching and/or managing several interactive entertainment and educational software publishing ventures (Creative Wonders, ABC Interactive, OT Sports, ABC News Interactive, ABC Wide World of Learning), the direct response marketing of ABC programming and ABC’s in-flight entertainment business. 

Prior to ABC, Ms. Vance was responsible for planning movie acquisitions for The Movie Channel. She has also held senior management positions with The Princeton Review as Executive Vice President & General Manager of Admissions Services, and before that as President and CEO of, an online resource network for people with disabilities. Ms. Vance holds a B.A. in International Relations/Russian from Washington University in St. Louis, is the mother of two daughters and lives in New York City.

About the ESRB 

The ESRB is a non-profit, self-regulatory body established in 1994 by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA). ESRB independently assigns age and content ratings, enforces advertising guidelines, and helps ensure responsible online privacy practices for the interactive entertainment software industry.

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Official photos from Play NYC 2017.