Dave Hollis, Disney exec turned self-help author, dies at 47

Feb 14, 2023, 3:42 PM | Updated: Feb 19, 2023, 8:18 am
FILE - This image taken from video shows Rachel Hollis, left, author of "Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop...

FILE - This image taken from video shows Rachel Hollis, left, author of "Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are so You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be," and her husband Dave Hollis, during an interview on Aug. 28, 2018, in New York. Dave Hollis, who left his spot as a Disney executive to join this then-wife Rachel in running her lifestyles empire, which include her bestselling book “Girl, Wash Your Face,” has died at his home in Texas on Sunday, Feb. 12, 2023. He was 47. (AP Photo, File)

(AP Photo, File)

DALLAS (AP) — Dave Hollis, who left his post as a Disney executive to help his wife run a successful lifestyle empire, has died at his home in Texas. He was 47.

Hollis, whose ex-wife Rachel Hollis wrote the bestseller “Girl, Wash Your Face,” was pronounced dead Sunday afternoon at his home in Dripping Springs, a city on the outskirts of Austin, according to Hays County Justice of the Peace Andrew Cable.

An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death since Hollis, who was last seen the evening before, was “youthful and didn’t have a long medical history,” Cable said.

In an Instagram post on Tuesday, Rachel Hollis asked for prayers as the family tries to “navigate through the unthinkable.”

“We are devastated,” she wrote. “I have no words and my heart is too broken.”

Dave Hollis worked for Disney for 17 years and had been head of distribution for the company for seven years when he left in 2018 to join his wife’s venture. The parents of four moved from Los Angeles to the Austin area, collaborated on livestreams, podcasts and organized life-affirming conferences. In their podcast, “Rise Together,” they focused on marriage.

When Rachel Hollis announced on Instagram in 2020 that they were getting divorced, she said they had worked “endlessly” over the prior three years to make their marriage work but came to the conclusion that “it is healthier and more respectful for us to choose this as the end of our journey as a married couple.”

During his tenure at Disney, Hollis oversaw the release of blockbusters including “Black Panther” and films in the the “Star Wars” franchise. He told The Associated Press in 2018 that he joined his wife’s enterprise after realizing he was in a corporate rut. He said his new life felt “like a calling.”

Hollis also wrote motivational books. His book “Get Out of Your Own Way: A Skeptic’s Guide to Growth and Fulfillment” was published in 2020 and he released “Built Through Courage: Face Your Fears to Live the Life You Were Meant For” in 2021.

Fitness trainer Heidi Powell, who dated Dave Hollis after his divorce, called his death “a nightmare” in an Instagram post Tuesday.

“This isn’t the way it was supposed to end,” Powell said.

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Dave Hollis, Disney exec turned self-help author, dies at 47