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Delaware North appoints longtime executives Jim Houser and Rick Abramson to new senior leadership roles

BUFFALO, N.Y. (May 31, 2017) – Delaware North, a global leader in hospitality and food service, today announced a pair of long-tenured company executives – Jim Houser and Rick Abramson – have been appointed to new roles as of June 1.
Houser, who most recently oversaw three Delaware North subsidiaries (Delaware North Sportservice, Patina Restaurant Group and Delaware North’s parks and resorts business) as a group president, has been promoted to executive vice president and chief operating officer. In this role, he will be based at Delaware North’s global headquarters in Buffalo, N.Y., reporting to Co-CEOs Jerry Jacobs Jr. and Lou Jacobs. Houser will have responsibility for Delaware North’s business operations around the world, with accountability for driving business performance.
Prior to becoming group president, Houser was president of Delaware North’s parks and resorts business and oversaw company operations in Australia and Asia. Houser has worked for Delaware North for more than 35 years and in a variety of leadership roles. Among many accomplishments, he is a past recipient of the President’s Award of Excellence, Delaware North’s highest operational award.
“Jim’s longevity with Delaware North and experience in a variety of leadership roles, both on the operations and corporate side of the business, make him a great choice for our next COO. He embodies the culture of our company, and we are proud to have him as a member of our senior leadership team,” said Delaware North Co-CEO Lou Jacobs.
Abramson, who had previously served as executive vice president and chief operating officer, has been appointed to the newly-created role of chief customer officer.
A 50-year veteran of Delaware North, Abramson will draw from his extensive expertise and client relationships to ensure the company’s competitiveness in an increasingly customer-centric global economy. He will focus his efforts on understanding the needs and wants of Delaware North guests and clients, and delivering against those objectives by leveraging all aspects of the company.
Throughout his distinguished career, Abramson has served in a multitude of leadership roles – touching every subsidiary of the company, including as president of its parks and resorts business, president of Delaware North Sportservice, and president and chief operating officer of Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, which Delaware North operates for NASA.
“Rick’s new role is a natural progression of his 50-plus years with Delaware North. He has always played an active role in the thoughtful mentorship of our company’s executives, which has positioned our company for the next wave of growth and innovation,” said Delaware North Co-CEO Jerry Jacobs Jr.