Meet the man who runs the country’s 4th largest cinema chain
WISCONSIN (NBC 26) – If you enjoy watching movies on the big screen, chances are you’ve probably seen a movie in one of the Marcus Theaters locations in northeastern Wisconsin.
This is the group that owns theaters like Bay Park Cinema in Ashwaubenon and Valley Grand Cinema in Appleton.
The group owns several others nationally and statewide. In fact, it is the 4th largest cinema chain in the country. You can click here to see a list of all locations.
As we continue to showcase Latinos in our community for Hispanic Heritage Month, we introduce you to the businessman who is one of the key leaders of this movie chain.
Meet Rolando Rodriguez. He is President, President and CEO of Marcus Theaters.
“Who would think that a child from Cuba would have ended up in a colder climate than what I was used to,” Rodriguez said.
The man who immigrated to the United States at the age of 11 came with his family fleeing the Communist regime.
To concern the video below to learn more about its history:
He now lives in Wisconsin, has a beautiful family and is a leader for Marcus Theaters.
Every day, he also brings his Latino perspective to the table.
âOne of the reasons you really got into this industry is that in Cuba you basically went swimming, playing baseball and going to the movies with the family,â Rodriguez said.
His passion for cinema is what sustained him throughout his career.
Today Rodriguez can be seen dressed in a suit and tie, making some big decisions, but it’s also important to note that he started from scratch.
âSo, frankly, when we got to the States, one of the funniest jobs I could find was working in a movie theater when I was 15. So basically ripping up tickets and work in concession stands, âRodriguez said.
The man of humble beginnings has never forgotten where he came from, which makes every step he has taken even more rewarding.
âI know what it’s like to be poor. In Cuba, many times my whole meal for the day was a piece of bread with sugar, âRodriguez said.
Upon arriving in the United States, he says he witnessed his parents’ hard work as they began to lay the foundations for a better future.
âMy parents obviously had no means, barely clothes, barely money and we basically lived in the projects, so for two years we lived in the projects. And I watched my parents through several jobs, each one raising enough money and they bought their first house. $ 11,000 provided after two years, âRodriguez said.
Seeing the sweat and tears of his parents allowed him to see what opportunities could come from hard work and dedication.
âIt was a great journey for a Latino and a Hispanic to obviously reach what I think is a pinnacle position. Not easy but you know that nothing in life is easy and certainly I would tell you that before arriving here there were a lot of obstacles along the way and certainly a lot of roads to cross â, said Rodriguez.
Rodriguez shares that in his experience, it’s not too common to see other Latinos in these types of positions of power.
In the future, he hopes to continue showing young people that they can aspire to do bigger and better things.
He thinks they just need to be inspired like he once was.