Karolyn Kirchgesler, CEO of Team San Jose, sent a video to employees and partners on April 19 informing them that she has been fighting small intestine cancer since last October and has decided to forego additional treatment. Kirchgesler has been CEO since 2013. Previously, she was president and CEO of the Saint Paul RiverCentre Convention and Visitors Authority for nearly nine years. Prior to that she was executive director of the Greater New Haven Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Stephen Yalof has joined Tanger Outlets as president and chief operating officer. Most recently, Yalof served as CEO of Simon Premium Outlets. Prior to this, he was senior vice president, real estate, for Ralph Lauren. Yalof succeeds Steven B. Tanger as CEO. Tanger will remain on the board of directors serve as executive chair.
The Advantage Travel Partnership has appointed Paul Hardwick as non-executive director. Hardwick joins the company from Fred Olsen Travel, where he was head of commercial. He was previously a travel agent for seven years, before starting his own independent travel agency from home in 2004. Having expanded the business, in 2008 he sold it to Fred Olsen Travel and remained on the board, where he is credited with doubling the size of its retail business. Hardwick now oversees the commercials for the whole company, including 60+ franchisees and online businesses, whilst still running the day-to-day operation of the retail shops.
The Washington Tourism Alliance has announced the appointment of David Blandford as its interim executive director, effective May 4. Blandford has work for Visit Seattle for 16 years. He has served as senior vice president, public affairs for the past three. The Alliance is a 501[c]6 organization established by industry stakeholders with the sole mission of developing and sustaining Washington State destination tourism marketing. It was formed in 2011 after the folding of the Washington State Tourism Office. Blandford replaces Mike Moe, who had served the organization for more than eight years, the last three as managing director.
The UK tour operator Cosmos has promoted Janet Parton to the role of sales and marketing director. Parton, sales director for Cosmos and Avalon Waterways since 2017, will take responsibility of the marketing function in addition to her current role overseeing the trade sales team. The expansion of her role follows the departure earlier this month of Claire Hazle from her position as marketing director. Parton has more than 20 years’ experience working in the travel industry, including tenures in senior sales positions at Carnival UK and MSC Cruises.