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Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde Announces Retirement

Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde Announces Retirement

Famed Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde has announced his retirement from Walt Disney Imagineering after 40 years. Rohde was responsible for Disney’s Animal Kingdom and had his hand in creating Pandora – The World of Avatar and more iconic projects.

The Walt Disney Imagineering Instagram broke the news and shared, “We can’t thank Joe enough for his infectious passion, being an incredible teacher and mentor, and for inspiring generations of Disney Imagineers and guests from around the world.”

In a statement on his Instagram, he explained, “It has been 40 years since I stepped foot in the door at age 25, not knowing anything about theme parks, Disney, or what it meant to work for a big company. Every day of my life since then has been a learning experience. I’m very glad to have had that opportunity, and proud of the work that has been done, not just by me, but by all my fellow Imagineers, and especially those who worked by my side over the decades But 40 years is a long time, and this strange quiet time seems like a great opportunity to slip away without too much disruption.”

Bob Weis, president of Walt Disney Imagineering, also shared on Instagram congratulating Rohde on his years of imagination and service. “Joe Rohde is a real life adventurer—in life, in art, and in work. Whether trekking across the mountains of Mongolia on an expedition to raise awareness for snow leopard conservation, or leading project teams from Animal Kingdom to Aulani to Pandora, Joe fully embodies the true spirit of adventure and exploration. He approaches these experiences, not as a tourist, but with curiosity, respect, and purpose,” Weis wrote.

Rohde’s last day with Disney will be January 4, 2021.

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See Rohde’s statement below.

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