Visit Tri-Valley, California has named Tracy Farhad, as its new president and CEO. She had been executive director at the Solvang Conference & Visitors Bureau for the past 14 years. Farhad succeeds Barbara Steinfeld who leaves the post after nearly seven years. Steinfeld has announced her retirement last autumn.
Ohio’s Destination Toledo has named Lance Woodworth its new president and general manager. Throughout 2019, Woodworth was Destination Toledo’s vice president of sales and relationship management. Previously, Woodworth worked 14 years as general manager of the Jet Express ferry service in Port Clinton, which is about 45 miles east of Toledo. He also served as board chairman of the Lake Erie Shores & Islands and the Port Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce.
Stephanie Lord has been named head of marketing for Global Travel Group, returning to the UK after four years as head of marketing communications for dnata’s portfolio of travel brands based in the UAE, including dnata Travel, Emirates Holidays, Arabian Adventures and Yalago. Lord was senior marketing manager at Gold Medal Travel Group prior to her tenure in Dubai. She will be responsible for leading Global Travel Group’s marketing team and functions.
Maria Grasso has been promoted to the post of vice president, citywide sales and convention services, at the Philadelphia CVB. A 20-year veteran of the bureau—she joined it in August 1999—Grasso previously served as senior director of national accounts
Jean-Michel Rey has just joined Selectour, a network of more than 1,200 travel agencies in France, as sales manager. The company is headquartered in Toulouse, France. He previously served as the commercial director of April International Voyage and held the same position for five years at Lagrange. He was also director of the Havas Voyages franchise network.
Jim Wood has left his post as president and CEO of Meet AC to take over as CEO of the Evansville (Indiana) CVB. Wood had announced his departure from the Atlantic City position last October. He had been CEO of Meet AC since 2014. Before that, he was president and CEO for 11 years of the organization now known as Louisville Tourism.
Travel Leaders Group announced that it has tapped Elizabeth Gaerlan to join the company as vice president, public relations and communications. Gaerlan has more than 20 years of experience in the combined areas of marketing, public relations, corporate communications and event management. Most recently, Gaerlan had her own PR firm. She also previously served as corporate communications director at Toys “R” Us.
In Germany, Bret Freter is leaving Alltours, effective at the end of January. He had served as head of sales for the tour operator since September 2014. Published reports in the European travel trade media indicated that he has a new job, but no details were available.
Joyce Cordeiro has been named account manager for New York City & Company for the Interamerican Network, a large public relations agency specializing in the Latin America market. She will be responsible for promoting and promoting New York City to the Latin America tourism market. Cordeiro is a veteran public relations professional, with more than 15 years in the sector, including a tour as account manager for Visit Tampa Bay
Greg Thurston has been appointed as the very first trade sales manager role at tour operator Audley Travel as the tailor-made specialist moves to target increased sales through agents. Thurston comes to his new position from Cox and Kings, where he served for more than 9 years, most recently as head of agency sales.
Donna Marchese was recently named regional director of global sales-Northeast, for Hard Rock International. She joined the company from Sonesta Hotels, where she was director, global sales organization. A veteran of more than 20 years in the travel and tourism industry, Marchese has also held senior-level positions in sales and marketing for such brands as KSl Resorts, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, Association Luxury Hotels International and Interstate Hotels & Resorts.