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Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

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  • Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

    I keep reading about them on this board, but can't figure out if they are special employees? regular employees? How does one become one? It seems like it is a special deal to be one. I don't recall seeing them at DL, but then I am busily rushing from ride to eating place to ride to eating place and on and on the whole time I am there! Thanks in advance for adding to my DL Knowledge!

  • #2
    Re: Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

    They provide a 'face' for the Disneyland Resort and represent it at many media events. They are frequently around at the opening of some new show or attraction, whatever new parade is going on. Whenever Disney is involved in some public service, an Ambassador will be there etc.
    Disneyland Ambassadors, if I'm not mistaken, are purely hired 'inhouse' in that they are existing Cast Members, and it is a tremendous honor to be one. The terms of service are generally one year. One becomes one through an extensive interview and audition process. Only those with most positive and extrovertive personalities will have any chance. Being photogenic is while not required, frequently a bonus.
    "If we cut the budget are you going to be the one standing at the exit explaining to guests why the ride they just rode is a piece of crap?" - - John Lasseter

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    • #3
      Re: Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

      Originally posted by Wally View Post
      They provide a 'face' for the Disneyland Resort and represent it at many media events. They are frequently around at the opening of some new show or attraction, whatever new parade is going on. Whenever Disney is involved in some public service, an Ambassador will be there etc.
      Disneyland Ambassadors, if I'm not mistaken, are purely hired 'inhouse' in that they are existing Cast Members, and it is a tremendous honor to be one. The terms of service are generally one year. One becomes one through an extensive interview and audition process. Only those with most positive and extrovertive personalities will have any chance. Being photogenic is while not required, frequently a bonus.
      A great answer! I wanted to throw in some history.

      The ambassador program was started by tour-guide-to-end-all-tour-guides, Cicely Rigdon (see her window on Main St.), to choose a cast member who would represent Disneyland when Walt couldn't. She (they were only "shes" for about 10 years, and were typically chosen from the ranks of the tour guides) would fly around the world and appear at openings, galas, on TV, interviews and anywhere else you can think of. The first ambassadors were actually called "Miss Disneyland" and the very first was Julie Rheim - who made her debut on the Disneyland 10th anniversary special with Walt. The ambassador has their own (larger, nicer) version of the Tour Guide & Host/Hostess "D pin" that says ambassador, and their term lasts one year. I believe it wasn't until the 50th that a TEAM of ambassadors was chosen (correct me if I'm wrong on that one). It's the highest honor you can receive as a front-line cast member, as it is basically an acknowledgment that you are the best of the best and the one (or two) people that represents the ideal Disneyland cast member. (or whichever resort you represent, since there are ambassadors for each resort.)
      "Remember 'Old Yeller'? We shot the dog." - Roy E. Disney

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      • #4
        Re: Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

        Originally posted by Wally View Post
        They provide a 'face' for the Disneyland Resort and represent it at many media events. They are frequently around at the opening of some new show or attraction, whatever new parade is going on. Whenever Disney is involved in some public service, an Ambassador will be there etc.
        Disneyland Ambassadors, if I'm not mistaken, are purely hired 'inhouse' in that they are existing Cast Members, and it is a tremendous honor to be one. The terms of service are generally one year. One becomes one through an extensive interview and audition process. Only those with most positive and extrovertive personalities will have any chance. Being photogenic is while not required, frequently a bonus.
        That's actually a really good explanation, but there's one other thing that they do which I think sometimes gets passed over.

        They're the official representative of all DLR (or WDW/DLP/TDR/HKD) CMs, so they also do a lot of things internally, such as presenting many of the Service and Anniversary awards that are awarded. They also Cross Train into various roles across the resort - you might find them one day preparing and serving you your meal on Monday, have them as your Jungle Cruise skipper Tuesday, and then have them help you at the Front Desk of one of the hotels on Wednesday.

        But yea, it is a really big honour to be chosen as one, and it is a pretty grueling process before and afterwards, but the people who are chosen are those who can deal with all the stress and still maintain the solid, positive image that is expected of Disney CMs. I haven't seen this year's team for myself, but from what I've heard, I think they'll do just fine .

        Originally posted by RumRunner31
        I believe it wasn't until the 50th that a TEAM of ambassadors was chosen (correct me if I'm wrong on that one).
        Actually the first team of Cast Ambassadors was chosen in 1995, consisting of Gerard Aquino, Julia Onder and Michelle Tryon.

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        • #5
          Re: Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

          Originally posted by RumRunner31 View Post
          The first ambassadors were actually called "Miss Disneyland" and the very first was Julie Rheim
          And here's Julie back in 1965 about to hit the friendly skies with then official airline of Disneyland and sponsor of Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room...United Airlines:



          As a side-note...being a former Disneyland Tour Guide or Ambassador was an "automatic hire" at United Airlines (usually for Flight Attendant positions) for many decades, and many past Tour Guides and Ambassadors can still be found working onboard United flights today.

          Also...a little dated but still a good overview of the Disneyland Ambassador Program can be found here:

          http://www.mouseplanet.com/more/mm021112.htm

          Also...a Disney video with former Disney Ambassador Jodie Dreyer:

          http://video.aol.com/video-detail/di...dor/1603333805

          And finally...a picture of one of Disney's more recent Ambassadors:

          http://www.ramsa.com/project.aspx?id=47

          Last edited by Opus1guy; 01-06-2008, 08:02 AM.

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          • #6
            Re: Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

            Originally posted by glendalais89 View Post
            have them as your Jungle Cruise skipper Tuesday
            While I remember meeting them, I don't think they did the "Guest Skipper" spot while I was there. Then again they usually tried to keep most of us away from the "Guest Skipper" CM's because we had a tendency to corrupt them.
            "Happiness is a Low Water Level"

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            "Creating magical memories and making Managers cry since 1955!"

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            • #7
              Re: Newbie Question ...What is a Disney Ambassador?

              WOW!!! Thanks so much, everyone! Great information and fun history! I think I am REALLY going to like Mice Chat a whoooole bunch! Sounds like a number of you could easily qualify as Disney Ambassadors!

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