ORLANDO, Fla., Oct. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- John T. Reilly, President of Busch Gardens and Water Country USA in Williamsburg, Va., has been named President of the SeaWorld park in San Diego, Calif. Reilly replaces Andrew P. Fichthorn, who announced his retirement last week. Busch Gardens and SeaWorld are among the 10 parks operated by Orlando-based SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment.
Reilly, 41, has held the top post at Busch Gardens Williamsburg since November 2007. Prior to that promotion, he was responsible jointly for the merchandise group at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and the company's corporate merchandise department.
Reilly started his career at Busch Gardens Williamsburg in 1985 as a food cart attendant while still in high school. After earning a bachelor's degree in Spanish and history from the College of William and Mary, he held positions of increasing responsibility in the culinary department at Busch Gardens, rising to Director in 1998. He was promoted to Culinary Vice President and moved to SeaWorld San Diego in 2001.
"John brings tremendous experience, leadership and analytical skills to this critical role," said Jim Atchison, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment President and Chief Executive Officer. "He has met every challenge and proved himself in every role he's played in this company, both corporate and park."
Reilly will relocate to San Diego and assume his new position in November.
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment operates 10 parks across the U.S.: SeaWorld Florida in Orlando, SeaWorld California in San Diego, SeaWorld Texas in San Antonio, Busch Gardens Tampa, Busch Gardens Williamsburg, Adventure Island in Tampa, Water Country USA in Williamsburg, Aquatica and Discovery Cove in Orlando and Sesame Place in Langhorne, Pa. near Philadelphia. SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment employs more than 20,000 people. SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment is a portfolio company of The Blackstone Group.
SOURCE SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment