Hamburg Native To Judge Rose Parade

December 27, 2011 Updated Dec 27, 2011 at 9:33 AM EDT

By WKBW News

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December 27, 2011 Updated Dec 27, 2011 at 9:33 AM EDT

WNY Native Receives Historic Appointment
Buffalo, NY---Western New York native and Disney Vice President of Global Special Events, Bryan Wittman, was recently appointed to the three-member panel responsible for judging the 2012 Tournament of Roses® Parade.

Bryan is a native of Hamburg, New York. While he was home during the holidays, he stopped by Channel 7's Eyewitness News to talk with John Borsa about his involvement with the Tournament of Roses Parade.

This will mark the second time that Wittman has officiated at the prestigious New Year’s event, having served as a parade judge in 2008. According to Gene Gregg, chairman of the parade judging committee, Wittman’s re-appointment is a rarely-accorded honor.

“Bryan has been an innovator in creating and producing family entertainment and special events at Disney Parks and Resorts around the world for more than 30 years,” Gregg said. “During that time he has become an incredible colleague of the tournament, putting together numerous Rose Parade opening entertainment shows and several floats (including the tallest float in Rose Parade history.) He has also planned and directed spectacular annual celebratory events at Disney Parks for Rose Bowl football teams, The Royal Court and Rose Parade marching bands. Therefore, our committee felt it highly appropriate to again appoint Bryan as a Tournament of Roses Parade judge , a distinction bestowed upon very few throughout the 123 year history of the parade.”

In acknowledging the significance of returning as a parade judge, Wittman focused on his long-running connection with the renowned event.

“I first began working with the Tournament of Roses in 1989,” Wittman said. “Since then, I’m proud to say that we have collaborated in producing a number of spectacular parade events. So being invited to judge the parade for a second time is not only a thrill, it’s also professional and personal validation of the exceptional partnership that the committee and I have enjoyed. It is my honor to be one of the few ever accorded this extraordinary Rose Parade privilege."

About Bryan Wittman: Bryan Wittman is a native of Buffalo New York with an extensive background in marketing and entertainment beginning with early career, event promotion at the Erie County Fair and Darien Lake. Currently Bryan works for The Walt Disney Company as the Vice President of Global Special Events, where his job responsibilities include the creative development, management and production of major special events and marketing projects for Disney Theme Parks and Resorts around the world. Bryan first joined The Walt Disney Company in 1984 as a senior promotions representative and ten years later was appointed vice president for project development and special events for Disneyland Resorts, Anaheim, Calif. Bryan attended Saint Francis High School in Athol Springs and is a graduate of Ashland University in Ohio with a degree in television production. Career highlights for Bryan include numerous grand opening celebrations for Disney Theme Parks, attractions, parades and shows, annual themed signature events and festivals, Super Bowl halftime shows and film premieres.
About The Pasadena Tournament of Roses: The Pasadena Tournament of Roses is a volunteer organization that annually hosts the Rose Parade® presented by Honda, Rose Bowl Game® presented by VIZIO and various associated events. The 123rd Rose Parade presented by Honda, themed Just Imagine, will take place Monday, Jan. 2, 2012, at 8 a.m. (PST) featuring majestic floral floats, high-stepping equestrian units and spirited marching bands. Following the parade, the 98th Rose Bowl Game presented by VIZIO will kick off at 2:10 p.m. and feature an exciting match-up between two of the top collegiate football teams in the nation. For additional information on the Tournament of Roses please visit the official website at www.tournamentofroses.com.