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IAAPA announces new second vice chair and elects new board members

IAAPA CEOs John Wood Jim Pattison 2017

IAAPA, the global association for the attractions industry, has announced the appointment of Jim Pattison, Jr., ICAE, to second vice chair, and the election of new board members for 2020.

IAAPA is pleased to announce that Jim Pattison, Jr., ICAE, has been elected to the post of second vice chair for 2020. During the election process, which happened at IAAPA’s meeting on the 16th of September in Paris, the board of directors selected 11 new board members for next year.

Pattison is the president of Ripley Entertainment and will take up the post in 2020, before serving as first vice chair in 2021 and leading the association as chairman of the board in 2022.

A respected industry veteran

“Jim is a highly respected industry veteran with a proven track record of success leading Ripley Entertainment and has been a dedicated, long-term IAAPA volunteer,” says John McReynolds, chairman, IAAPA Governance Committee, and senior vice president, external affairs, Universal Parks & Resorts. “I’m confident Jim, along with IAAPA’s newly appointed international board members, will have a positive impact on the association and will help shape its future.”

Pattison brings many years of expertise in the industry to the role and is a long-serving IAAPA member. He is currently the president of Ripley Entertainment and is a global operator of more than 100 attractions in 10 countries, including aquariums, museums, haunted attractions, wax museums, sightseeing train tours, family entertainment centres (FECs), miniature golf courses, travelling shows, and retail.

In addition to this, Pattison has contributed to many IAAPA Committees, such as Executive Finance, Strategic Planning, Amusement Parks and Attractions, Government Relations, North America Regional Advisory, Membership, and Small Parks and Attractions.

Outstanding service

Pattison and the staff of Ripley Entertainment received a special IAAPA Service Award in 2017, presented by the board of directors. This was in recognition of their service to IAAPA when the association moved its global offices. Pattison and his team allowed IAAPA to use Ripley Entertainment’s corporate headquarters as a  temporary office and meeting space. They also provided support and assistance during the relocation process.

New board members

The following IAAPA members were appointed to the IAAPA board of directors in 2020:

Facility Member Directors

  • Fernando Aldecoa, general manager, PortAventura Entertainment, Spain
  • Massimiliano Freddi, ICAE, CEO, Wonderwood, Italy
  • Xavier Lopez Ancona, founder and CEO, KidZania, Mexico
  • Tony Yuhung Sze, ICAE, group senior counsellor, Chimelong Group Co., Ltd., China
  • Laura Woodburn, ICAE, managing director, attractions and the employee and guest experience, Hersheypark, United States

Manufacturer and Supplier Member Director

  • Chloe James Hausfeld, ICAL, director, marketing and business development, Jack Rouse Associates, United States

Advisory Board Director

  • Darrell Metzger, ICAE, adjunct professor, Signature Management University, United States

EMEA Regional Advisory Committee Chair

  • Miikka Seppala, CEO, Särkänniemi Theme Park, Finland

North America Regional Advisory Committee Chair

  • Ted Molter, ICAE, chief marketing officer, San Diego Zoo Global, United States


  • Curt Caffey, ICAE, president of water parks division, ProParks Management, United States

IAAPA is celebrating the success of IAAPA Expo Europe which recently took place in Paris, and is also gearing up for IAAPA Expo 2019 which will be held in Orlando from the 18th – 22nd November.

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charlotte coates

Charlotte Coates

Charlotte Coates is blooloop's Editor. She is from Brighton, UK and previously worked as a librarian. She has a strong interest in arts, culture and information and graduated from the University of Sussex with a degree in English Literature. Charlotte can usually be found either with her head in a book or planning her next travel adventure.

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