Florida Guide > Disney General
Disney's Windows - Part 7
DISNEYS WINDOWS part7
General William E. “Joe” Potter was executive vice president of the 1964-5 New York World’s Fair when he was hired by Walt in 1965 to work on his secret Florida project. While Admiral Joe Fowler was responsible for Magic Kingdom Park in Florida, Joe Potter was in charge of the governmental aspects and infrastructure of the property. His team moved over seven million cubic yards of dirt for Magic Kingdom Park and dug more than fifty-five miles of water-drainage canals. He built the underground Utilidor system, supervised building design, and created innovative sewage, power, and water treatment plants. His window’s heading “General Joe’s building Permits” makes reference to his division’s governmental responsibility to review and approve all building structure plans during the construction of Walt Disney World resort.
The former president and vice-chairman and principal creative executive of Walt Disney Imagineering, Marty Sklar began his Disney career a month before Disneyland Park opened, while still a twenty one year old student of UCLA. He created the Disneyland News , an 1890s style souvenir newspaper, and was soon responsible for writing most of the Disneyland park marketing materials and souvenir pictorials. Starting in the late 1950s, Marty was Walt’s personal writer and served as lead communicator of Walt’s concepts for Walt Disney World resort and Epcot. Marty also wrote Walt’s messages for the company’s annual reports. He joined WED in 1961, where he later wrote the scripts for Walt’s announcements of Walt Disney World Resort and for the film in which Walt described his vision for Epcot. Marty became Imagineering’s creative leader in 1974 and was named Imagineering Ambassador in 2006.
Donn Tatum was West Coast vice president at the ABC Television network in 1953 when he sat in on the infamous meeting during which Roy O. Disney pitched the idea of Disneyland Park to the network. Donn was enthusiastic about the project from the start, so much so that he became production business manager at the Studio in 1956. He rose to become executive vice president of Disneyland Park and later was called to assist with the Florida land acquisition for Walt Disney World resort. He played a major role in the resort’s creation, and he was named the first president of Walt Disney World resort. Donn succeeded Roy Disney as chief executive officer and chairman of the board of Walt Disney. Productions in 1971, becoming the first non-Disney family member to hold those titles.
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