Greg Chiecko, a results-oriented proven leader with extensive and diverse experience in the outdoor amusement business and fair industry has been selected by the OABA Board to lead the mobile amusement industry’s trade association.
The board of directors of the Outdoor Amusement Business Association (OABA) announces that Greg Chiecko, of Chicopee, MA, has been named President and CEO, effective February 1, 2019. Chiecko is currently Director of Sales at Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, MA, home of The Big E, the nation’s sixth largest fair.
This announcement follows a comprehensive executive search process conducted by the OABA’s Organization Committee with assistance from a local talent management firm, Strickland Associates, following President Bob Johnson’s announcement of his intent to retire after 24 years at the helm of the OABA.
“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 CEO,” said Jay Strates, Chair of the OABA. “This is an opportune time for Greg to join the OABA and work with our Board to accomplish our strategic goals as we approach the 55th year serving our members. I believe Greg’s steady and thoughtful approach is exactly what we need to ensure the ongoing success and growth of this trade association.”
Chiecko is no stranger to carnivals and fairs, as he has overseen midway operations at The Big E, hosted industry fundraisers and regularly attended OABA events, International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) expos and the International Association of Fairs and Expositions (IAFE) where he served as a Board member and chaired several committees. His leadership in the New England Association of Amusement Parks (NEAAPA), the Massachusetts Agricultural Fairs Association (MAFA), plus his local civic and philanthropic leadership has given him the experience to take complex issues with diverse individual opinions and facilitate discussions, resulting in mutually beneficial compromises and action.
“I am extremely honored to be named president and CEO by the OABA Board of Directors,” Chiecko said. “I look forward to working with, and listening to, the many talented individuals in our industry in order to provide an association that fulfills the needs of its members. After my 24-year career with Eastern States Exposition I am ready to utilize my skills and experience in the carnival, fair, circus and concessions business to benefit the outdoor amusement industry. My priorities will be to strengthen the communications and relationships between carnivals and fairs in order to forge
long lasting and mutually beneficial relationships, continue to improve regulatory advocacy, member services, fundraising and networking opportunities.”
About the OABA
The Outdoor Amusement Business Association (OABA) was founded in 1965 to serve the mobile amusement industry and has become the largest trade association representing carnivals, circuses, concessionaires, independent ride owners and others who serve fairs, festivals and events in the US and Canada.