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Karen Staley Named Executive Director of IAAPA’s European Operations


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The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) announced IAAPA Europe Deputy Director Karen Staley has been named Executive Director for IAAPA’s operations in Europe, effective Jan. 1, 2011. Staley will lead IAAPA’s efforts to expand and enhance its programs and services in Europe and will oversee government relations, communications, membership development, education, and the Euro Attractions Show.

“Karen has done an outstanding job for us for many years, ” said Charlie Bray, president and CEO of IAAPA. “Her proven record of performance, combined with her passion, drive, and vision for our European operations make her the ideal person to continue to grow and develop our member services and programs in Europe.”

Staley started at IAAPA in 2004 as manager of marketing and exhibit sales for IAAPA’s conference and trade shows in the United States, Europe, and Asia. In 2006, she assumed the role of operations manager for IAAPA Europe and the Euro Attractions Show (EAS). She was promoted to director of operations in 2008 and was named deputy director of IAAPA Europe in 2009.

Staley has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Hood College in Frederick, Maryland and a master’s degree in business administration from Mount St. Mary’s College in Emmitsburg, Maryland. She grew up in Germany and speaks German and English fluently. She also speaks French conversationally. She will reside in Germany, report to IAAPA’s president and CEO, and work closely with IAAPA’s European Advisory Committees and Subcommittees.

Staley will continue to work closely with Andreas Andersen, the current executive director of IAAPA’s European Operations, until he leaves on Dec. 31 to become the president and CEO of Liseberg Group.


The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) is the premier trade association for the attractions industry worldwide. Founded in 1918, IAAPA is the largest international trade association for permanently situated amusement facilities and attractions and is dedicated to the preservation and prosperity of the attractions industry. IAAPA represents more than 4, 000 facility, supplier, and individual members from more than 90 countries. Member facilities include amusement/theme parks, waterparks, attractions, family entertainment centers, zoos, aquariums, museums, science centers, resorts, and casinos. IAAPA is a nonprofit organization. Revenue generated for the association by its involvement in trade shows and other activities are returned to the association to fund services for its members and the industry. The association’s global headquarters is in Alexandria, Virginia, United States. The association maintains regional offices in Brussels, Mexico City, and Hong Kong.

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