06 Oct 2017

USA: Cedar Fair Announces Leadership Changes

Richard Zimmerman

Sandusky/Ohio-based Cedar Fair Entertainment Company, which is specialized in the operation of regional amusement parks, waterparks and entertainment centers, has recently announced changes in its leadership team. Richard Zimmerman (57), President and Chief Operating Officer of the group, will become new Chief Executive Officer of the company effective January 1st, 2018. He succeeds Matt Ouimet, who steps down from his current role to take over the newly created role of Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors. Furthermore, Debra Smithart-Oglesby, board member since 2012, will be named Lead Independent Director.

“I have very much appreciated the opportunity to serve as the CEO of Cedar Fair and I am proud of what our team has accomplished,” said Ouimet. “The market value of Cedar Fair has increased by more than 2.2 billion Euros (2.6 billion USD) during my time at the company. This performance provides us with a solid foundation to build upon and a positive outlook for the future. Richard is a perfect choice to succeed me as CEO and I look forward to continuing to partner with him as the executive chairman going forward,” he added.

Zimmerman, who has more than 30 years of experience in the hospitality and leisure entertainment industry, had been named Executive Vice President of the company in 2007. In 2011, he became Chief Operating Officer and last year he took over the role as President of Cedar Fair. Previously, he had served as Vice President and General Manager of the Kings Dominion amusement park. “Having the opportunity to lead Cedar Fair is a distinct yet humbling honor. We are fortunate to have an exceptional organization with a deep and talented leadership team. We are also fortunate to be a leader in an industry that continues to have the potential to grow and expand. I look forward to the opportunity to continue broadening our offerings to better serve our guests, as well as providing long-term value for our investors,” said Zimmerman.

Cedar Fair also noted effective January 1st, 2018, Eric Affeldt will transition from his role as Chairman of the Board but will continue to serve as a Director. (eap)