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New Chairman Tom Staggs Visits Walt Disney World

posted on January 8th, 2010 by Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

When Tom Staggs was asked what he’d like to do first as new chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, he said, “Get to the sites, spend time with the Cast and benefit from their knowledge.” And this week, he’s doing just that.
Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs

During his visit to Walt Disney World, Tom spent time learning the business firsthand during a whirlwind tour that included meetings with Cast, time in the parks and interaction with backstage operators. One important stop was Fantasyland, where Tom learned more about plans for an upcoming major expansion. He also met with Cast Members at the Disney Reservation Center, Space Mountain Operations Center (where he worked in a spin on Space Mountain) and other locations around Walt Disney World Resort property.
Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs
And at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park, Tom met with Cast Members during a backstage tour of The Festival of the Lion King attraction before enjoying a live performance. He also visited with the animal programs team and observed a cardiac ultrasound on a gorilla.
Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs
As Tom wrapped up his first Walt Disney World visit in his new role, he noted that he will celebrate two decades with The Walt Disney Company this month. “After 20 years, it’s nice to say I just had two of the best days of my career, being out on the property and seeing the Cast in action.”

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Filed: Disney's Animal Kingdom, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort



Darren from CA on January 8th, 2010 at 4:23 pm

Great start to a huge job………our Parks are in good hands!


Doug from OH on January 8th, 2010 at 4:36 pm

Very good to see the new top brass of Parks and Resorts getting to know what the parks are really like!


John on January 8th, 2010 at 4:43 pm

This is the sort of leadership that I see in Mr. Iger as well. I am thankful that Disney is led by humble individuals.


Kelly on January 8th, 2010 at 5:00 pm

It’s always great to see the executives out in the parks! Seeing this more and more lately, and I like the trend! Keep up the good work!


Thor from CA on January 8th, 2010 at 5:01 pm

OMG! That’s really awesome that Tom is out visiting the parks! I hope I get to meet him at Disneyland!


Tim on January 8th, 2010 at 5:18 pm

I’m glad the head of Park Ops is visiting the parks. He should be spending a lot of his time in the parks to get an idea of what is needed.

I just hope that these visits are somewhat unannounced where he can see what the parks are really like, and not a sugar coated schedule that steers him away from problem areas.


Evan on January 8th, 2010 at 5:23 pm

Good. Hope he saw the problems of WDW and plans to fix them.


Charles on January 8th, 2010 at 5:57 pm

Tell me this is not the first time he has been out on the property ‘visiting the cast’ in 20 years with the company.


Tyler from MA on January 8th, 2010 at 6:02 pm

Good news! LOve to see executives out! Here’s to an improved WDW!


Karen on January 8th, 2010 at 7:49 pm

When is WDW going to start offering annual or seasonal passes using a flex pay or monthly payment system? We go several times a year and it would be so much better if this service was offered.


Douglas from MD on January 8th, 2010 at 7:57 pm

Great Start!! It’s exciting to have a new face and a hands on chairman for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. Can’t wait to see what’s in store for Walt Disney World and at National Harbor in Maryland!


Orville from SC on January 8th, 2010 at 11:11 pm

Cast members are one of WDW’s best assets. I hope the new chairman makes sure to take good care of them, and ensure that the new cast members stay true to the high standards Disney sets.


Amanda on January 9th, 2010 at 1:13 am

While it’s good to see Tom out in the parks, I would be more impressed if he followed in Walt’s footsteps and went in more low key. No handlers, no photographers, just checking out the park as the average consumer would. What ever happened to executives like that?


Catherine on January 10th, 2010 at 2:46 pm

WELCOME! My 5 year old daughter enjoyed her first Bibbity Bobbity Boutique treatment last year for her birthday. She still talks about it. This could be expanded beyond Downtown Disney and the Castle.