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New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau Names 2012 Board of Directors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contacts:
Kelly Schulz/Jennifer Lotz
504-566-5019
kschulz@neworleanscvb.com/jlotz@neworleanscvb.com

New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau Names 2012 Board of Directors
Fred Sawyers of Hilton New Orleans Hotels to serve as Chairman of the Board

NEW ORLEANS (Dec. 22, 2011)- The New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) has inducted its 2012 Board of Directors. This esteemed group of business leaders provides the strategic direction for New Orleans' $5 billion tourism industry and advances the interests of the CVB's 1,000 members. Fred Sawyers, Complex General Manager, Hilton New Orleans Hotels, will serve as Chairman of the Board.

Mr. Sawyers graduated from Stanford University, and then completed the International Institute for Management Development Program. Prior to New Orleans, he spent seven years in Portland, Oregon, managing the Hilton Portland & Executive Tower and the DoubleTree by Hilton Columbia River/Jantzen Beach. He is Treasurer of the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, and is past Chairman of the Greater New Orleans Hotel & Lodging Association. A veteran of more than 26 years in the hotel business, Sawyers is currently the complex general manager of the DoubleTree by Hilton New Orleans in addition to general manager of the 1,622-room Hilton New Orleans Riverside.

The 2012 Board of Directors Executive Committee:

  • Fred Sawyers, Complex General Manager, Hilton New Orleans Hotels (Chairman)
  • Bill McCreary, Area Managing Director, Starwood Hotels & Resorts (Past Chair)
  • Gregory Rusovich, CEO, Transoceanic Trading & Development (Chair Elect)
  • Amy Reimer, General Manager, International House Hotel (Secretary)
  • Steve Pettus, Managing Partner, Dickie Brennan & Company (Treasurer)
  • Ron Forman, Audubon Nature Institute (Chairman-Strategic Planning Committee)
  • Doug Thornton, LSED/SMG-Mercedes-Benz Superdome (Chairman-Audit Committee)

At Large:

  • Iftikhar Ahmad, New Orleans International Airport
  • Darryl Berger, The Berger Company
  • Bob Brown, New Orleans Business Council
  • Katy Casbarian, Arnaud's Restaurant
  • Aaron Dirks, Limousine Livery
  • Martin Driskell, Hotel & Lodging Association
  • Terry Epton, Global Hosts Alliance
  • Bonnie Helmker, Freeman Company
  • Ronald Markham, New Orleans Jazz Orchestra
  • Melvin Rodrigue, Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
  • Michael Smith, Hyatt Regency Hotel
  • Steve Woodruff, Commander's Palace Restaurant
  • Bonnie Boyd, BBC Destination Management
  • Steve Caputo, Hotel Monteleone
  • Susan Taylor, New Orleans Museum of Art
  • David Villarrubia, Degas House

Honorary Positions
•· Eric Granderson, Interim Vice President, City of New Orleans - Councilmember-at-Large
•· Stacy Head, Councilmember, City of New Orleans - District B
•· Kristin Palmer, Councilmember, City of New Orleans - District C

A nominating committee identified and selected board candidates based on their industry knowledge, experience and diversity. The slate was elected by the CVB's membership at the Annual Business Meeting held on December 13, 2011. In addition to hotels, restaurants, attractions, transportation and cultural economy-related businesses, the board includes leaders from the New Orleans Business Council, the Convention Center and the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

The New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau is a nationally accredited, 1,000-member destination marketing organization and the largest and most successful private economic development corporation in Louisiana. We help create $5 billion in new capital each year- more than any other business sector- by attracting millions of visitors, special events and conventions. The CVB and its members influence thousands of decision-makers and millions of visitors to choose New Orleans through direct sales, marketing, public relations, branding and visitor services at our New Orleans headquarters and offices in Washington, D.C., New York, Chicago and four foreign countries. Consistently recognized as one of the top five CVBs in the country, the New Orleans CVB celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2010. For more information, please visit http://www.neworleanscvb.com/.

 

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