SANDUSKY — Cedar Fair LP revealed Thursday that Jacob T. “Jack” Falfas, the amusement park company's chief operating officer since 2005 and the man widely believed to be the next successor to Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dick Kinzel, resigned last week.
The action, disclosed in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing by the company, came just four days after Cedar Fair's largest shareholder was able to get two new director's on the company board.
Mr. Kinzel, 68, is expected to retire in 2012, so industry observers will be watching to see whether the big shareholder, two Texas-based investment funds known collectively as Q Investments, will attempt to have their own replacement named. Q Investments previously said it was not looking to replace Mr. Kinzel.
Cedar Fair gave no explanation for the sudden departure of Mr. Falfas, who had worked for the company for three decades and was considered Mr. Kinzel's key executive.
Mr. Falfas was general manager of Knott's Berry Farm from 1997 to 2000, and was vice president of Cedar Fair Management Co. and head of West Coast operations from 2000 until becoming chief operating officer, a position Cedar Fair's board created for him. He resigned Saturday, effective immediately.