Reggie Fils-Aimé is the President of Nintendo of America, but you probably already know that because Reggie stands out among other people in the corporate world. His outgoing, jovial personality sets him apart from everyone else; and even better, he isn’t afraid to let Nintendo fans have a laugh at his expense. He doesn’t reflect the everyday stuffed suit because he very naturally shows that he has a genuine connection to Nintendo and its fans.
On May 25, 2006, Reggie became the President of Nintendo of America, making 2015 his ninth year carrying the prominent role with the company. We’d like to commemorate the anniversary, as well as the upcoming E3 event, by highlighting some of Reggie’s finer moments with Nintendo.
Reggie is probably more of an average Joe than most executives at large companies. He’s a first generation American, born to Haitian immigrants in 1961, and happened to be the very first American to hold the title of President of Nintendo of America. He came to Nintendo by way of several companies, including Pizza Hut and VH1, where he revamped the flagging station and brought it a large ratings boost. (Remember “I Love the ‘70s” and “I Love the ‘80s”? Reggie was responsible for those.)
He joined Nintendo in late 2003 as the Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing and made a splash with his first E3 presentation in 2004, where he famously said, “My name is Reggie. I’m about kickin’ ass. I’m about takin’ names. And we’re about makin’ games.”
He would later go on to famously state that his body was ready when Nintendo unveiled the Wii Balance Board in 2007 (which spawned the famous online meme “My body is Reggie”). What adds even more humor to the expression is that he calls back to it pretty frequently during public affairs. In 2012 he made a “my body is ready” joke and the crowd went wild. Most executives won’t find ways to relate to fans on more personal levels (you probably won’t see Kaz Hirai making a Ridge Racer joke this year), but Reggie does. He treats the comedic bits like inside jokes among friends, and he knows Nintendo fans aren’t laughing at him, but with him.
As awesomely fun as previous Reggie statements and skits have been, we’ve got to admit that one of our very favorite moments happened just recently with the Nintendo World Championships announcement. In it, Reggie was seen quitting Nintendo so he could compete in the events. A Rocky-style training montage followed the abrupt declaration he made to a table of shocked co-workers, and we sat back to watch him play with historical Nintendo products in really comical ways to prep for the competition. He used a Power Pad with his hands and then, at one point, struggled with a Virtual Boy (which is especially noteworthy, as Nintendo famously never seems to mention it).
Watching the segment confirmed what we already knew: Reggie and Nintendo understand what’s great about their history and the strengths that carried them through it to this day. The video illustrated that Reggie is just like all of us: he loves Nintendo’s history– and he cheated at World Class Track Meet, too.
We can’t wait to see what’s in store for Nintendo at E3 this year. After watching Reggie dish out some majorly memorable moments in a three minute video, the possibilities for a three day event seem endless.
So, Reggie, with our controllers raised high in salute, we’d like to thank you for always knowing how to stand out in the crowd while representing Nintendo in your own fun and personal, yet professional, way.
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