IAAPA, the global association for the attractions industry, has appointed Peter van der Schans, executive director and vice president of the IAAPA Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region starting April 4, 2022. Based in the association’s regional office in Brussels, Belgium, van der Schans will lead IAAPA’s efforts to grow membership, enhance member services in the region, and increase participation in IAAPA events including IAAPA Expo Europe.
“We are excited to welcome Peter to the IAAPA EMEA team,” shared Jakob Wahl, chief operating officer, IAAPA. “He comes to IAAPA with more than 15 years of leisure industry experience from a number of attractions including theme parks, zoos and theaters. We’re excited for the perspective he can bring to the region and to the IAAPA Expo Europe show floor.”
Most recently, van der Schans served as general manager, Dierenrijk, a family zoo in Mierlo, Netherlands, after holding the role of manager at the Pathé Theatre in Nijmegen, Netherlands, helping to grow attendance from 180,000 to 600,000 visitors annually. Prior to that, he was the park manager of Attractiepark Toverland, in Sevenum, Netherlands, where he contributed to the strategic expansion of the organization with Avalon and The Magical Valley.
Van der Schans completed the IAAPA Institute for Attractions Managers in 2014 and holds a Bachelor of Business Administration, Leisure Management from Stenden University in Leeuwarden, Netherlands. He will report to Wahl.