Kampgrounds of America (Montana) - The largest system of privately held campgrounds in the United States

11-11-2020

(Uskings.us) Since 1962, KOAs have been the place to create unforgettable moments – relaxing with family or friends, enjoying the great outdoors or gathering around a campfire.

Kampgrounds of America (KOA) is the world's largest system of privately held campgrounds with almost 500 locations across the United States and Canada. It was founded in 1962 and is based in Billings, Montana. The current President/CEO of KOA is Toby O’Rourke.

KOA was founded in 1962 in Billings, Montana by businessmen Dave Drum, John Wallace and 2 other partners. Drum got the idea to start the campgrounds while walking his property along the Yellowstone River and seeing travelers heading to the Seattle World's Fair. The first campsites, known as Billings Campground, were located on Drum's property north of the Yellowstone River.

For $1.75 per night, campers could pitch their tent on a campsite that included a picnic table and fire ring. This first campground also provided hot showers, restrooms, and a small store. The campground was quickly successful and by the summer of 1963, Drum, Wallace and their partners decided to create a system of campgrounds throughout North America. They named the company Kampgrounds of America and began selling franchises.

By the end of the 1969 camping season, KOA had 262 campgrounds in operation across the U.S. By 1972, 10 years after KOA's creation, KOA had 600 franchise campgrounds.

In 2015, Jim Rogers stepped down as CEO after 15 years and was replaced by the president of the company, Pat Hittmeier. In April 2019, Hittmeier retired, and was replaced by new CEO Toby O'Rourke, the first woman to hold that position in the company's 57-year history.

Toby O'Rourke - The first woman CEO in the KOA's 57-year history.

According to wikipedia


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