Skip to main content
October 13, 2023   •   5 min. read
Employee Stories Work & Innovation

Creating Wonders & Ensuring Safety: Meet Jana, Structural Engineer, Disneyland Resort

From maintaining Sleeping Beauty Castle to partnering with project teams developing exciting new offerings for Disneyland Resort, the Architecture & Facilities Engineering team plays an integral role at the heart of the magic. Meet Jana Tokuhama, a Staff Structural Engineer who has been with the team for the past five years.

“Disney has always been a leader in the entertainment industry, and our theme parks allow guests to immerse themselves in the world of their favorite movies and shows,” said Jana. “My work as a structural engineer brings all those experiences to life in a safe way.”

Structural engineers help project teams throughout the process of conceptual studies, design development and construction. They provide feasibility studies, conduct design reviews, and visit project sites, to ensure that our projects satisfy our guests and cast members while keeping safety paramount. They also frequently partner with the maintenance and support team to ensure all elements are safe from a structural perspective, assisting in inspections and providing repairs as needed to keep The Happiest Place on Earth operating safely.

Jana & the construction team

“My favorite part of the day is being able to be on-site at projects and be able to physically see a project from demolition to every part in the construction process. I also enjoy being able to see guests’ reactions when our projects are complete and open to the public. The awe and joy in the eyes of our younger guests is the best feeling.”

Jana’s previous experience working at a consulting structural engineering firm helped prepare her for her current role at Disney.

“Through that firm, I was able to work on the conversion of the Hyperion Theatre to house the ‘Frozen Live at the Hyperion’ show as a consulting engineer. That was the first time I got to walk backstage at the resort, and it was also the first time I had worked on an entertainment/theme park project.”

Artist concept of the Adventureland Treehouse

Currently, Jana is supporting ongoing work transforming Tarzan’s Treehouse to a new experience paying tribute to the original treehouse that Walt Disney and his Imagineers built in 1962 for the hit movie, “Swiss Family Robinson.” The Adventureland Treehouse will showcase wondrous new environments created amongst the branches of a giant tree on the shores of the Jungle River, where guests will once again enter by the giant waterwheel and follow the wood rope stairways up, up, up into the boughs.

“Two years into the process, we have worked closely with partners at Walt Disney Imagineering, Operations, Safety, consultants, contractors, and so many more to retrofit the treehouse and provide a new experience for guests who may have been too young to remember the original Swiss Family Treehouse.”

At Disney, teamwork is key to bringing the magic to life and Jana has seen that in action on every project she has supported. Together, Jana and her partners on a project must find the delicate balance between achieving a desired creative vision and ensuring structures are safe and compliant with codes and standards.

“My favorite aspect about my team environment is the ability to work with a big group of people, with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and expertise. It’s rare to be able to not only work with architects and engineers directly but also with artists, food and beverage people, hotel workers, steel workers, and rockwork designers. I am inspired by my fellow cast members, especially the ones on my team, who work tirelessly to ensure the magic at our resort remains alive, while also ensuring that we are keeping our guests safe and sound.”

Jana & her team posing with Minnie Mouse

Aside from working on uniquely Disney projects, the culture of camaraderie fostered in the workplace sets a career at Disney apart. Whether going about a normal workday or racing around the Rivers of America in Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes with your coworkers during the Disneyland Resort Canoe Races, you can find your community.

“There is something to be said about feeling like a small fish in a big ocean at times, but it’s the relationships I have built with my coworkers that make the days go by quickly. We have a high standard we need to maintain, but my fellow cast members are all working towards the same goals of safety and guest experience that makes work fun.”

As The Walt Disney Company looks ahead to the next century, Jana is proud to be a part of the ongoing transformation and growth. In fact, Jana was honored by her peers as a 2022 recipient of the Walt Disney Legacy Award. Less than 1% of all Disney Parks, Experiences and Products cast members receive this award, making it the highest honor awarded to cast members across the globe who continue to live out Walt Disney’s lasting legacy of excellence as a dreamer, a creator and an inspiration.

“It’s an honor to be a small part of continuing Disney’s legacy. I remember going to the resort with my grandma, brother, and cousins when I was a kid. While things have definitely changed since that time over 20 years ago, it is a cool feeling to be able to maintain that same magic while also keeping up with the new technologies that enhance the theme park experience.”

Interested in joining our Disney Engineering teams? Click here to explore available roles!

Related Content

Watch Our Jobs

Sign up to receive the latest news and company information based on your preferences. An asterisk indicates a required field.

Interested InSelect a job category from the list of options. Select a location from the list of options. Finally, click “Add” to create your job alert.

By clicking "Submit", you agree to our Terms of Use (opens in new window) and acknowledge that you have read our Privacy Policy (opens in new window).

By clicking "Submit", you agree to our Terms of Use (opens in new window) and acknowledge that you have read our Privacy Policy (opens in new window). If I have elected to receive marketing messages or newsletters, I may withdraw my consent for these marketing messages at any time.

By clicking "Submit", you agree to our Terms of Use (opens in new window) and acknowledge that you have read our Privacy Policy (opens in new window), Cookies Policy (opens in new window) and EU Privacy Rights (opens in new window).

How we use your personal information and your rights:

  1. Your personal information is controlled by The Walt Disney Company Limited of 3 Queen Caroline Street, London, W6 9PE, United Kingdom.
  2. When you visit or shop with Disney or use any Disney product, service or mobile application, other members of The Walt Disney Company Family of Companies may also use your information to provide you these services, personalise your experience and send you service related updates and communications.
  3. You have a number of rights including the right to request access to, change, or remove your personal information, or to change your marketing preferences (including withdrawing your consent at any time.) Please see our Privacy Policy (opens in new window) to learn more about managing your marketing preferences or deleting your account.
  4. Our Data Protection Officer can be contacted by emailing:
  5. You have a right to lodge a complaint with the UK Information Commissioner's Office: (opens in new window).
  6. For more information about Disney's data collection and use practices please read Disney's Privacy Policy (opens in new window).

By clicking "Submit", you agree to our Terms of Use (opens in new window) and acknowledge that you have read our Privacy Policy (opens in new window) and Collection Statement (opens in new window).

For more information about our general data collection, use, and practices, including how to manage your preferences, please read our Privacy Policy (opens in new window). I have read and agree to the Terms of Use (opens in new window).