News Releases

27 June 2006

For further information:
Brian Ban
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Disney Executive Selected to Keynote SIGGRAPH 2006

(Chicago, IL, - June 2006) - Joe Rohde, Executive Designer and Vice President with Walt Disney Imagineering presents the SIGGRAPH 2006 keynote address, "From Myth to Mountain: Insights Into Virtual Placemaking." The 33rd International Conference & Exhibition on Computer Graphics & Interactive Techniques is being held July 30 - August 3 in Boston, Massachusetts.

Rohde is currently in charge of the design and development for Disney's Animal Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. He has led conceptualization, design, and production for Disney's Animal Kingdom since its inception in 1990.

"It is an honor to have such a dynamic and creative leader as our keynote speaker in Boston," stated John C. Finnegan, SIGGRAPH 2006 Conference Chair from Purdue University. "It is also fitting to add such a distinguished and cutting-edge professional to the long legacy of dynamic and fascinating SIGGRAPH keynote speakers."

Rohde performs extensive research to ensure each theme park adventure produces the most authentic experience possible, often traveling long distances to guarantee each attraction is as realistic as possible.

Most recently, Rhode has led the development and production of Expedition Everest, the new thrill attraction at Disney's Animal Kingdom. This project took him to the far corners of the Himalayas, researching the background details to incorporate into the very authentic environment designed for Expedition Everest. As with many other projects at Disney's Animal Kingdom, a portion of the research focused on conservation. Joe accompanied the scientists who documented the biodiversity of these areas, while he explored oral traditions of the yeti that were integrated into the storytelling of the attraction.

An avid adventurer, Rhode has traveled in Indonesia, Nepal, India, Bhutan, Kenya, Tanzania, and elsewhere, both on his own and in the process of designing Disney's Animal Kingdom. He joined Imagineering, the division of The Walt Disney Company that designs and builds Disney's theme parks and resort hotels, in 1980 during the development of Epcot.

More information on the SIGGRAPH 2006 Keynote Address

SIGGRAPH 2006 will bring an estimated 25,000 computer graphics and interactive technology professionals from six continents to Boston, USA for the industry's most respected technical and creative programs focusing on research, science, art, animation, gaming, interactivity, education, and the web from 30 July to 3 August 2006. SIGGRAPH 2006 includes a three-day exhibition of products and services from the computer graphics and interactive marketplace from 1-3 August 2006. More than 250 international exhibiting companies are expected. Registration for the conference and exhibition is open to the public.


ACM SIGGRAPH, the leading professional society for computer graphics and interactive techniques, sponsors SIGGRAPH 2006.