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Disney taps future successor to cruise president Karl Holz

Anthony Connelly, right, will return to DCL in October to ensure a smooth transition with Karl Holz, left, who's retiring Feb. 15 Anthony Connelly, right, will return to DCL in October to ensure a smooth transition with Karl Holz, left, who's retiring Feb. 15 (Photos: Disney Cruise Line)

Walt Disney Co. veteran Anthony Connelly is to succeed Karl Holz as president of Disney Cruise Line and New Vacation Operations when Holz retires in February.

Connelly was svp operations at DCL before moving to Walt Disney Imagineering last year.

Holz's retirement is effective Feb. 15. Connelly will return to DCL and New Vacation Operations in October this year to ensure a smooth transition.

'Karl is a truly exemplary Disney leader who has directed major expansion for our cruise business and other parts of our vacation portfolio during his more than 20 years with our company,' said Bob Chapek, chairman, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts.

'His commitment to excellence and relentless focus on creativity have served Disney well,' Chapek continued, 'and his passion for doing what is best for our cast, crew and guests is second to none. All of us at Disney appreciate everything Karl has done to make Disney magic on a global scale.'

Holz was made DCL president in  2003. In 2004, he moved to Paris as president and ceo of Euro Disney. He was appointed to his current position in early 2009 and has presided over the successful introductions of new ships Disney Dream in 2011 and Disney Fantasy in 2012, among numerous other accomplishments.

Connelly's 27 years with Disney include serving in senior leadership roles in finance, cruise operations and, most recently, Walt Disney Imagineering.

'I know that Anthony’s business acumen and his commitment to delivering only the best possible guest experience will enable our teams to continue innovating and delighting the families who vacation with us,' Chapek said.

Posted 05 April 2017

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Anne Kalosh

US editor of Seatrade Cruise Review and Seatrade Cruise News

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