As Senior Vice President of Global Merchandise and Partnership Development, Karen leads a corporate-level team responsible for Strategic Planning, Brand Management (owned and licensed), Concept and Product Development, Assortment Planning, Merchandising and Sourcing/Purchasing for all Park and Resort Retail Businesses, as well as management of the NBCU Product Safety Center.
Karen is also responsible for Partnership Development on behalf of Universal Parks and Resorts, supporting NBCU Corporate Sponsorships and other Global, Strategic Marketing/Promotional Opportunities.
Karen is an active member of the GE Women’s Network, and currently serves on the Boards of Directors for the Universal Women’s Network and The Universal Orlando Volunteer Organization, which she has participated in for the past eight years, serving two years as President. This Organization is the recipient of the Points of Light Award, a National Recognition Award for excellence in Volunteerism.
Karen graduated of the University of Florida, with a Bachelors degree in Journalism and Communications, and completed the Executive Development Program at the Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania. She has 28 years of experience in the hospitality industry.
Karen began her career with Universal Orlando in 1990, as part of the opening team for Universal Studios. Prior to her current role, she served in several Executive Leadership and Department Head capacities for various divisions of the Company, including: Food and Beverage, as Director of Operations and Support Services for both Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios; Vice President of Merchandise Operations and Vice President of Revenue Operations for Universal Orlando, and Vice President of Partnership Development for Universal Parks and Resorts Marketing.
Karen has lived in Florida for 33 years. She and her husband, Dann, have been married for 17 years, and have four children: Jessica, 24, Amanda, 22, and twins, John and Lindsey, 15