Mr. Sippel had been senior VP-sports and product management for ESPN customer marketing and sales since April 2006. He succeeds David Wachtel, who recently left, the company said.
All eyes are on the Journal right now, following its acquisition by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. in December. Since then, Mr. Murdoch has toyed with taking down pay walls at the paper's website, only to decide to continue mixing free and subscription content; decided to move its offices from downtown Manhattan to midtown; started planning a sports page; seen the exit of executives such as Chief Marketing Officer Ann Marks and Publisher L. Gordon Crovitz; and installed new executives charged with expanding the franchise.
Mr. Rooney previously lured away ESPN executives including Chris Collins and Don Reis, both multimedia-sales pros.
In his new role, Mr. Sippel will be responsible for developing events, promotions and big advertiser programs. "His experience across multiple platforms brings knowledge and the ability to drive brand awareness, which will benefit the Journal franchise as a whole and help reach our long-term goals," Mr. Rooney said in a statement.
Mr. Sippel held a variety of posts at ESPN, including senior VP-marketing intelligence; senior VP-sales and marketing for ESPN.com, ESPN the Magazine, and ESPN's media and data services; and VP-publisher of the magazine.