Greg Chiecko Named President, CEO of Outdoor Amusement Business Assoc.
WEST SPRINGFIELD — Greg Chiecko, director of Sales at the Eastern States Exposition (ESE), has been named president and CEO of the Outdoor Amusement Business Assoc. (OABA), the mobile amusement industry’s trade association.
The announcement was made by the OABA board of directors following a comprehensive executive search. Chiecko succeeds longtime OABA President Robert Johnson, and will embark on his new career on Feb. 1.
The OABA is the largest trade association representing carnivals, circuses, concessionaires, independent ride owners, and others who serve fairs, festivals, and community events.
“Greg’s diverse professional industry experience, proven leadership, and business acumen gained at Eastern States Exposition, coupled with his affable leadership style, make him the ideal president,” said Jay Strates of James E. Strates Shows, chairman of the OABA.
Chiecko’s 24-year career at ESE included the oversight of midway operations at the Big E. He worked closely with the OABA and other industry associations and is past board member of the International Assoc. of Fairs and Expositions, and past president of the Massachusetts Agricultural Fairs Assoc. and the New England Assoc. of Amusement Parks and Attractions. He also sits on the board of the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau and served as its chair for five years.
“I am honored to be named president and CEO by the OABA board of directors,” he said. “My priorities will be to strengthen the communications and relationships between carnivals and fairs in order to forge long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationships and continue to improve regulatory advocacy, member services, fundraising, and networking opportunities.”
Added Eugene Cassidy, president and CEO of the ESE, “while this is a loss to Eastern States Exposition, it is a plus for one of our collateral trade associations and is good for our industry. I am proud that ESE hatched the new leader of the OABA, and I’m proud of Greg. Eastern States Exposition stands in strong support of the OABA and Greg.”
The Eastern States Exposition, a year-round trade and consumer show facility, is the home of the Big E, the sixth-largest fair in North America, which takes place Sept. 13-29, 2019 in West Springfield.