SeaWorld San Diego CEO stepping down as part of ‘leadership transition plan’
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. announced Tuesday that its CEO stepped down in what the theme park company termed a “leadership transition plan.”
Chief Parks Operations Officer John T. Reilly will serve as interim CEO following the departure of Joel Manby, according to the Orlando, Florida-based company. The board plans to launch a national search to find a permanent successor.
Manby was hired in 2015 to help turn SeaWorld around following a firestorm of criticism over its killer whales that resulted in a dip in attendance.
Reilly has served as park president of SeaWorld San Diego and Busch Gardens Williamsburg. He has been with the company for more than three decades.
“The board agreed that this transition plan is the right approach to advance the company’s progress and create value for all our important stakeholders,” said Donald Robinson, lead independent board director.