Harrison “Buzz” Price, age 89, passed away yesterday in Southern California. He was a renowned research economist, theme park pioneer, & crucial part of Disney theme park history. Mr. Price personally recommended the Orange County site where Disneyland now stands to Walt & Roy O. Disney themselves, and years later recommended the Florida site for Walt Disney World. An engineering graduate from the California Institute of Technology & Master in Business Administration graduate from Stanford University, Harrison “Buzz” Price ultimately conducted 150 studies for the Walt Disney Company (including site and feasibility analysis for several Disney parks) and over 3,000 projects for other clients.
Walt’s daughter, Diane Disney Miller, remembers Mr. Price having a large imprint on her family; “From the time of his first involvement with Dad in selecting the site for Disneyland, Buzz was involved in nearly everything our family did.” (- PR Newswire)
Leadership in supporting the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) led Mr. Price to receiving an honorary Doctor of Arts degree in 2005 from the renowned institute, which has launched the careers of creative alumni in animation, film, theatre, dance and music. He was the first Lifetime Achievement Award winner from the Themed Entertainment Association, was inducted into the Hall of Fame for the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions, and in 2003 Michael Eisner (then Chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company) named Harrison Price a “Disney Legend.”
Michael Eisner during the 2003 recognition ceremony: “Buzz Price was as much responsible for the success of the Walt Disney Company as anybody except Walt Disney himself, in that he worked with Walt not only on finding the sites of both Disneyland and Walt Disney World, but on many other new initiatives, like the 1964 New York World’s Fair and the 1960 Winter Olympics in the Lake Tahoe area,” Eisner recalled. “But more than being a pioneer and visionary, he was one of the nicest and most professional and gentle friends of the company.” (- PR Newswire)