Launch - Movers & Shakers - November 2018

A Kid Again Welcomes First National Office President and CEO


A Kid Again, a nonprofit organization that provides adventures for kids facing life-threatening illnesses, welcomed Oyauma Garrison as its first national office president and CEO. The organization, now in its 22nd year of operation, plans to expand nationally and internationally under Garrison’s leadership. It said he will lead strategic efforts for sustainable chapter advancement that enable the organization to reach more than 1 million kids by developing hope, happiness, and healing through local and national kid-centric adventures. Most recently, Garrison served as senior vice president of The Jacobson Group, giving leadership to Jacobson’s temporary staffing arm, which provides insurance professionals to help organizations manage workload functions.


McKeogh Creates Attractions Academy


Shaun McKeogh recently formed the Attractions Academy to provide global training services. He describes the firm as specialists in training standards, solutions, leadership development, and service excellence systems to support attractions in building engaged workforces. McKeogh has spent the past 21 years as an engaged IAAPA member, providing training services at some of the world’s leading attractions. He most recently served as vice president at Management Resources and ProFun Management Group.


Three Promotions at Embed

Embed—a subsidiary of out-of-home entertainment provider Helix Leisure with offices in Australia, Singapore, the United States, and the United Arab Emirates—promoted key personnel to new positions in its U.S. office. Danny Mondragon will now oversee all Embed system deployments as head of installations. He will ensure both on-site and remote installations are completed to customers’ satisfaction and ready to generate profits from day one. Two other managers have assumed newly created roles. Salena Cigan will serve as head of customer onboarding and focus on enabling customers to have a seamless, stress-free experience when partnering with Embed. Martin Baugh is the new strategic partnerships manager. He’ll handle the complex requirements of Embed’s largest accounts, making certain their needs are met.


Michael Gazer

Movers_GazerMichael Gazer joined Canada-based Player One Amusement Group (P1AG) as its new senior vice president and general manager. He brings more than 20 years of leadership experience in marketing, sales, operations, and finance to his new role. He will oversee all aspects of P1AG operations across North America and provide strategic leadership to drive the business’ growth. Previously, Gazer served as president and sat on the board of directors of Apetito Canada, where he grew and expanded the brand across Canada. He’s also held executive roles at Hooplah Inc., Nelson Education Ltd., and Shifting Gears Consulting.

Manuel Gonzalez

Movers_GonzalezCalifornia’s Great America announced that Manuel “Manny” Gonzalez joined the park as vice president and general manager. As an executive with global experience in the entertainment and hospitality industries, the park said his background in master planning and development will play a critical role in the park achieving its long-term vision. The property is currently involved in a multiyear transformation following the City of Santa Clara’s approval of its master plan. Prior to joining California’s Great America, Gonzalez served as managing partner at RX Entertainment, a global attraction consulting group.


Pete Owens

Movers_OwensPete Owens was promoted to vice president of marketing and public relations at The Dollywood -Company’s branded parks and attractions in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. He provides public relations direction for the Dollywood theme park, as well as Dollywood’s Splash Country, Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, Dolly Parton’s dinner theaters, and Pirates Voyage brands. Owens most recently served as the company’s director of communications and public relations. Before coming to The Dollywood Company in May 2000, he was assistant news director/executive producer at WATE-TV in Knoxville, Tennessee, and news director of WPDE-TV in Florence/Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

In Memoriam

George Angermeyer


Betson Enterprises, a division of H. Betti Industries Inc., is grieving the passing of George Angermeyer after a long illness. Angermeyer worked as service manager for H. Betti Industries in Carlstadt, New Jersey, for more than 30 years. The company said that from the beginning, he demonstrated superior service skills and rose steadily to manage all service operations but notes Angermeyer will be remembered as a kind person, who was always available when needed. He was born in South Amboy, New Jersey, and is survived by his wife Jill Hall-Angermeyer and his son Justin Michael Angermeyer.

Mark Repine

Movers_RepineAugust 14, 2018, was marked by the sudden passing of Mark J. Repine. As owner of Trademark Enterprises Inc. in Estes Park, Colorado, Repine was a preeminent installer of water slides for many manufacturers. His work took him to amusement parks across the United States and in the Bahamas. His career in the attractions industry began in 1985 with the installation of a water slide at Idlewild Park in Ligonier, Pennsylvania, and he immediately concluded that the work was his calling. One of his greatest joys was being on hand when a new ride opened. He said he loved seeing children riding and the joy it brought them, which made all of his hard work worthwhile.