With theme parks and resorts spanning thousands of acres, Walt Disney World Resort is an economic force in Central Florida. But is the Mouse House actually the Sunshine State’s largest employer?

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: While massive, Disney is not the biggest employer in Florida. That title goes to the public Miami-Dade County School District, which edges out Disney in total jobs.

In this article, we’ll look at the data on the largest employers in Florida and see how Disney compares. Analyzing the workforce numbers of top public, private, and non-profit entities gives perspective on Disney’s significant, but not dominant, role in the state’s economy.

Disney’s Florida Employee Count

When it comes to employment in Florida, Disney undoubtedly plays a significant role. With its vast array of theme parks, resorts, and entertainment complexes, Disney is known for providing thousands of job opportunities to residents and visitors alike.

While it’s difficult to confirm whether Disney is the largest employer in Florida, there is no denying the substantial impact it has on the state’s job market.

Breakdown by Site

Disney operates several sites in Florida, each contributing to its overall employee count. The Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando is the largest and most well-known of these sites. Covering an area of approximately 25,000 acres, the resort employs a diverse range of individuals in various roles, including attractions, hospitality, food and beverage, and more.

Additionally, Disney also has a significant presence in other locations such as Disney’s Vero Beach Resort and Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort.

It’s important to note that Disney’s employee count fluctuates throughout the year, especially during peak seasons and major events. The resort often hires additional staff to accommodate the increased influx of visitors, ensuring that guests have a memorable experience.

Types of Jobs

Disney offers a wide range of job opportunities, catering to individuals with diverse skill sets and interests. From entry-level positions to specialized roles, there is something for everyone. The company provides employment opportunities in areas such as guest services, entertainment, operations, maintenance, marketing, event planning, and more.

Moreover, Disney also offers professional internships and college programs, allowing students and recent graduates to gain valuable experience in their respective fields. These programs provide participants with the opportunity to work alongside seasoned professionals and gain insight into the inner workings of a global entertainment company.

It’s worth mentioning that Disney is committed to fostering a positive and inclusive work environment. The company values diversity and encourages individuals from all backgrounds to apply for their job openings.

This commitment to diversity is evident in the company’s hiring practices and employee engagement initiatives.

Larger Public Employers

When it comes to public employers in Florida, Disney may not hold the top spot. While it is true that Disney is a major employer in the state, there are other organizations that employ even more people. Let’s take a look at some larger public employers in Florida.

Miami-Dade Schools

One of the largest public employers in Florida is the Miami-Dade County Public Schools. With over 40,000 employees, including teachers, administrators, and support staff, the school district plays a vital role in education in the region.

The school district is responsible for providing quality education to over 350,000 students in the area.

If you are interested in learning more about the Miami-Dade County Public Schools, you can visit their official website here.

Other School Districts

Aside from Miami-Dade County, there are several other school districts in Florida that employ a significant number of individuals. For example, the Broward County Public Schools, located just north of Miami-Dade County, also boasts a large workforce.

With over 30,000 employees, the district serves more than 270,000 students.

In addition to these, other larger school districts in Florida include Orange County Public Schools, Palm Beach County School District, and Hillsborough County Public Schools. These districts employ thousands of teachers and staff members to ensure that students receive a quality education.

To learn more about these school districts, you can visit their respective websites:

While Disney is undoubtedly a major employer in Florida, it is important to recognize the significant contributions of other public employers, particularly in the education sector. These organizations play a crucial role in shaping the future of the state by providing quality education to students across Florida.

Top Private Company Employers

When it comes to employment in Florida, several private companies stand out for their significant contribution to the state’s job market. While Disney is often associated with being a major employer in Florida, it is not actually the largest private employer in the state.

Let’s take a look at two other companies that hold this distinction.

Publix Super Markets

Publix Super Markets is a well-known grocery store chain that has a strong presence throughout the state of Florida. With its headquarters in Lakeland, Publix operates hundreds of stores and employs a large number of Floridians.

In fact, Publix is currently the largest private employer in Florida, with thousands of employees across the state. The company offers a range of job opportunities, from cashier positions to management roles, making it a significant contributor to Florida’s job market.

Walmart Stores

Another major private employer in Florida is Walmart Stores. With multiple locations spread across the state, Walmart provides employment opportunities for thousands of Floridians. The retail giant offers a wide range of positions, including customer service, sales, and management roles.

While the exact number of employees in Florida is not readily available, Walmart is known for its large workforce and significant contribution to the state’s economy.

While Disney is undoubtedly a major employer in Florida, it does not hold the title of the largest private employer in the state. However, it is important to note that Disney plays a significant role in the tourism industry, which is a major economic driver for Florida.

The company employs thousands of people in various roles, such as theme park operations, hospitality, and entertainment. Disney’s presence in Florida contributes to the state’s overall employment opportunities and tourism industry.

For more information on the largest employers in Florida, you can visit the official websites of Publix Super Markets (https://www.publix.com/) and Walmart Stores (https://www.walmart.com/).

Major Hospital Networks

Florida is home to several major hospital networks that provide quality healthcare services to residents and visitors alike. These healthcare systems employ a significant number of individuals, contributing to the state’s economy and playing a crucial role in the well-being of its population.

Jackson Health System

Jackson Health System is one of the largest public healthcare networks in Florida. It is composed of several hospitals, specialty centers, and primary care clinics, serving patients from all walks of life.

With its main campus located in Miami, Jackson Health System employs thousands of healthcare professionals, including doctors, nurses, and support staff. The network is known for its commitment to providing comprehensive, high-quality care to its patients.

According to recent statistics, Jackson Health System employs over 12,000 individuals, making it a major employer in the healthcare sector. Its dedication to patient care, research, and education has established it as a leading healthcare network not only in Florida but also in the United States.


AdventHealth is another prominent hospital network that operates multiple facilities throughout Florida. With a focus on whole-person care, AdventHealth aims to provide not only medical treatment but also emotional and spiritual support to its patients.

The network offers a wide range of services, including emergency care, specialized surgeries, and innovative treatments.

As one of the largest employers in the state, AdventHealth employs over 30,000 individuals across its various locations in Florida. The network’s commitment to compassionate care and advanced medical technology has earned it a reputation for excellence in healthcare.

It continues to expand its reach and invest in cutting-edge research and treatments to meet the evolving needs of its patients.

It is important to note that while Jackson Health System and AdventHealth are major hospital networks in Florida, there are other significant healthcare providers in the state as well. Each of these networks plays a vital role in ensuring that Floridians have access to quality healthcare services.

Impact of Tourism on Job Market

The tourism industry plays a significant role in shaping the job market in Florida, with many businesses relying on the influx of tourists to drive their operations. One of the key players in this sector is Disney, which has a substantial impact on employment in the state.

Hospitality Sector

The hospitality sector, which includes hotels, restaurants, and entertainment venues, is one of the main beneficiaries of Florida’s thriving tourism industry. With millions of visitors flocking to the state each year, there is a constant demand for workers to provide services and cater to the needs of tourists.

Disney, being one of the largest tourist attractions in Florida, has a significant presence in the hospitality sector and employs a considerable number of individuals.

According to reports, Disney employs over 75,000 people in Florida alone, making it one of the largest employers in the state. These employees work in various capacities, ranging from hotel staff and restaurant workers to performers and maintenance personnel.

The company’s commitment to providing exceptional customer service and unique experiences has contributed to its success in attracting both domestic and international tourists, thereby creating employment opportunities for thousands of individuals.

Ripple Effects

The impact of Disney’s employment extends beyond its direct workforce. The company’s presence in Florida has created a ripple effect on the job market, leading to the growth of other industries and businesses.

Suppliers, contractors, and vendors who work with Disney also benefit from the increased demand for their products and services. This, in turn, generates more job opportunities in various sectors, such as manufacturing, transportation, and retail.

Furthermore, the presence of a large employer like Disney attracts other businesses to the area, seeking to cater to the needs of both employees and tourists. This includes the development of new hotels, restaurants, and retail outlets, which require a workforce to operate and manage their establishments.

The multiplier effect of these additional job opportunities further strengthens the impact of Disney’s employment on the overall job market in Florida.


While Disney World employs tens of thousands in Florida, analysis shows it lags behind several major school districts and retailers in total jobs. Still, Disney’s influence is magnified by its outsized role in tourism, a vital industry for the state. This look at top employers contextualizes Disney’s considerable, but not unmatched, economic footprint.

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