- In Service to the Mouse: My Unexpected Journey to Becoming Disneyland's First President, Jack Lindquist (with Melinda J. Combs), 2010, 248 pp.
Lindquist takes us on a chronological journey of his career working at Disney. Like other memoirs about Disney artists and cast members, the book shines when you read about the events that seem to have a larger role in the company's history. You get a feel for how organic Disneyland was and how everything grew based on need, trial and error. Lindquist started as an advertising manager and ended his career as the very first president of Disneyland. Lindquist takes the opportunity to dispel a few myths and seems to revel in the time he spent orchestrating Disneyland and many of the local programs like grad night and civic days.
Lindquist was on the team sent to get approval and funding for EPCOT Center's World Showcase pavilions. The stories he relates really show that no one had ever taken on such a large project that worked with so many disparate countries. In some cases, the team spent weeks waiting to speak to a dignitary or royal family member to show them the concept artwork and models. Most of the book does focus on Disneyland and you get a sense that Linquist did have some struggles promoting Disneyland the way he wanted after Walt passed away. The memoir is bittersweet in many ways, but he never shies away from speaking his mind--even if it appears contrarian or not quite in the Disney spirit. Lindquist always wanted what was best for Disneyland, though, and that shows in the stories.
It is an enjoyable read and it is ideal for Disneyland fans and historians looking for any information about Disneyland.
Looking for other Disney-related memoirs?
- Window on Main Street: Creating 35 Years of Happiness by Van Arsdale France
- Justice for Disney by Bill Justice
- A Photographer's Life with Disneyland Under Construction by Carlene Thie
- Walt's People Volume 10 by Didier Ghez
- Working with Walt by Don Peri
- Spinning Disney's World by Charles Ridgway