The Internal Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) has elected Amanda Thompson OBE as second vice chair of the attractions industry trade body.

Thompson, managing director of Blackpool Pleasure Beach, an iconic British coastal amusement park with annual revenues of £33 million, will serve as IAAPA’s second vice chair in 2018.

In line with the association’s three-year ascension tradition, she will be first vice chair in 2019, before leading the association as chair in 2020.

“Amanda’s first-hand knowledge of leading a successful family owned business and her diverse industry experience make her the perfect person for this role,” said Mario Mamon, chairman of the IAAPA governance committee.

“She is a third-generation attractions industry leader and a long-time IAAPA volunteer. All of this, coupled with her passion for the industry make her the right leader at the right time for IAAPA.”

Discussing her appointment, Thompson said: “I’m excited for this opportunity to give back to this industry I love. It’s been a part of our family and our family business for many decades.

As her journey to becoming the association’s chair commences, Thompson’s appointment underlines the growing, and welcome, influence of women in the attractions industry.

Less than two weeks ago IAAPA named Karen Staley as senior vice president of the group’s North American operations. She will relocate from IAAPA’s regional office in Brussels to the association’s global headquarters in Florida.