Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is already open at Disneyland Resort and will open soon in Walt Disney World on August 29th, 2019. Kappy Thorsen is the General Manager for Disneyland Park – Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge. She is one of the next highlights in the Women Behind the Magic series from Disney Parks Blog. Kappy leads cast members and teams at Disneyland Resort to create magic and memories for guests every day. She spent the last two years preparing for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge to open.
According to Disney Parks Blog, “Kappy grew up working for her family at Roaring Camp Railroads, a historic tourist railroad in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Whether she was scooping ice cream, selling tickets, or helping to clean restrooms, she “did it all” and took great pride in being a part of the family business. In fact, it was working with her family’s business that first sparked her interest in theme park operations. Each year, Kappy and her family would make the more than six-hour drive to visit the Disneyland Resort – a place Kappy knew she always wanted to work ever since she was a child.”
“Working for Disney has always been a dream of mine,” she shared. “My father was inspired by Disneyland – he was creative, artistic, and had an entrepreneurial spirit. I tried to emulate him from a very young age.”
Disney Parks Blog goes on to share, “Heavily influenced by her parents and love of art, design and business, Kappy earned a Bachelor’s of Arts degree from San Jose State University. Upon graduation, she planned on applying for Disneyland in one of these fields. However, her father unexpectedly passed away, and her mother took over the family business which instantly changed Kappy’s path.”
“I put my Disney dream on hold to assist my family. I watched my mom become an influential female business leader in the community,” she reflected.
She ended up applying for and accepting a role at Disneyland park as the assistant manager responsible for the steam trains.
“I often refer to my mom as my ‘hero’ because of her great courage, outstanding business achievements and character,” she says. “I would not be where I am today without her as my role model.”
She has had a 20 year career with Disney and has had opportunities to advance her career in other areas.
“Each role taught me something new and challenged me in different ways, which prepared me for today. Every day is an adventure,” she shared.
“Our cast’s dedication, passion and love of the Disney brand and Star Wars franchise is contagious,” she says. “They put everything into creating magic for our guests, which is amazing to watch! When visiting Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, guests can interact with cast members in a whole new way – learn their stories, explore and play throughout the land like never before.”
“It was an emotional experience on many levels,” she explained. “My team and I helped bring Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge to life for our guests. A dream job come true.”
Congrats to Kappy for all of her success in her career and her role in the creation of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge!
Photo and Source Credit: Disney Parks Blog