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Great Wolf Resorts names new CEO

Great Wolf Resorts Inc., America’s largest chain of indoor water park resorts, has appointed Murray Hennessey as CEO. Hennessy, one of the company’s bo...

Laura Mullan
|Mar 12|magazine6 min read

Great Wolf Resorts Inc., America’s largest chain of indoor water park resorts, has appointed Murray Hennessey as CEO. 

Hennessy, one of the company’s board members, served as Great Wolf’s interim CEO since December when Ruben Rodriguez left the company and will now officially assume the role permanently. 

With a strong roster of leadership roles, Hennessey has experience expanding several of hospitality and leisure-focused companies when he served as CEO for Avis Europe and online train ticket retailer Trainline respectively. 


In addition to this, he has also served as chairman of the board for companies such as restaurant chain TGIF, and speciality advertising firm Talon Outdoor. 

The Wisconsin-based firm currently had 15 water park resorts under the Great Wolf Lodge brand and, under the guidance of Hennessey, the company aims to open three more by late 2019.

These include properties in Georgia and Illinois which are scheduled to open by 2018, and a property in Arizona which is expected to open in late 2019. 
“Great Wolf Lodge is well known for its indoor water parks and this is certainly reason enough to visit, but the brand’s ability to deliver a distinct and immersive family experience in all aspects of the resort is what truly makes Great Wolf unique, and why families have developed such a strong affinity for the brand,” said Hennessy in a statement. 

He added: "This commitment to excellence makes me extremely excited to be part of the Great Wolf pack, and I’m honoured to have the opportunity to lead one of the industry’s best management teams as we continue to expand the brand within North American and internationally.”

William D. Rahm, chairman of the board of directors of Great Wolf Resorts, added: “Murray is an exceptional leader.  

“His diverse experiences, collaborative approach, personable attitude and ability to develop high performing teams to drive growth, together with his proven experience and relationships leading Great Wolf, make him such a compelling choice to lead Great Wolf Resorts through this powerful growth phase.”