Don Staley, president & CEO of the Tuscaloosa Tourism & Sports Commission, has been given a three-year extension of his contract with the commission. Staley, who had served as executive director of sports for the commission from 2010-14, returned to Tuscaloosa in 2017 to take over as president and CEO. Staley left Tuscaloosa when was hired in 2014 as executive director of the Foley (Alabama) Sports Tourism Complex.
David Filipiak has been named director of sales at Fotografiska New York, a new photography museum located in Mahattan’s Flatiron District. Previously, he was with the National Geographic Encounter for more than three and-a-half years. His career in the tour and travel industry also includes tenures with the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Denise Thevenot, executive director of Louisiana Tax Free Shopping for nearly 15 years, is retiring from the organization, effective August 7, 2010. Before joining Louisiana Tax Free Shopping, Thevenot was an administrative manager at the University of New Orleans.
Barb Wilson has been appointed chief of staff for the Port of Seattle Commission. Wilson brings to the job 25 years of experience in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors in Seattle. Most recently, Wilson worked for 10 years as the executive director of the Seattle Planning Commission, where she was responsible for overall operations and advised city officials on complex urban planning and development issues. Prior to that, she was a program manager for National Wildlife Foundation, worked on regional outreach and advocacy initiatives for the Northwest Energy Coalition, Save Our Wild Salmon Coalition, and developed field strategies for Hands Off Washington. Most recently, she was the Director of Government Affairs at Vulcan Inc., the investment and project management firm founded by the late Paul G. Allen.
After a 43-year run, Rick Baron, managing director of global sales for Tauck World Discovery, has departed the company. In a statement, he said, “Although it is purely voluntary, ‘transitioning’ to the Tauck Alumni Club is not a choice I would make under any other circumstance. None of us could have ever have imagined facing current challenges or choices. It feels like the time is right.”
CVC, Brazil’s largest tour operator/travel agency, has named Marcelo Leite as the company’s chief technology officer. He replaces Jacques Varaschim. Leite, was most recently IT director at Schlumberger, Unibanco, MasterCard and Alelo. His last and longest tenure was as general director of DWQ Expedições.
Jayne Buck is retiring from her post as vice president of tourism at Visit Denver. Buck has been with the organization almost 21 years.
Andy Freeth (left) has stepped down from his position as chief executive of luxury operator If Only after two years on the job. Product and distribution director Gordon McCreadie will assume Freeth’s responsibilities in the newly created role of general manager. Both Freeth and McCreadie joined the company, along with other management level employees from Travel 2 and Gold Medal. If Only acquired last November by Elegant Resorts owner Portman Gravel Group, and founders Brendan and Mary Maguire retired from the business.
Stephanie Pace Brown, who recently left her position as president and CEO of Explore Ashville, has been named executive vice president of Indianapolis-based SMARinsights, a research and marketing firm that specializes in serving destinations. Pace Brown started her career in economic and marketing research with the Ohio Office of Tourism and Colonial Williamsburg. She later served as president and CEO at the Alexandria (Va.) Convention & Visitors Association before joining Explore Ashville in 2008.
After serving for more than two decades in which she served in different positions within the fvw media group, Marliese Kalthoff has left the company. The last day on the job for Kalthoff, the long-time managing director and publisher of FVW Medien, was June 30. Ingo Becker, who succeeds Kalthoff, comes from the Hamburger Morgenpost as an experienced media professional, where he worked as managing director of Hamburg First Medien & Marketing.
Robin Shaw, CEO of senior travel specialist Saga Travel, is the company after a decade. He joined the company in in March 2010 as CEO of the cruise division and was appointed CEO of Saga Travel in January 2018. Before joining Saga, he held a series of senior positions in the travel industry with Avis Europe and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines.
Gilles Ringwald was recently named deputy general manager, commercial affairs, for Corsair. As a member of the executive committee, he reports directly to Pascal de Izaguirre, CEO of the company, which is based at Orly Airport in Paris and has flight service to Miami, New York and other North American destinations. A 30-year veteran of the industry Ringwald began his career at Lufthansa in 1990. Over the years he has held senior positions at Thaï Airways International, Jet Airways—he served at one point a managing director of sales in New York—and at Air Transat in Montreal.
Keri Hanson, who was international marketing director for Macy’s for more than seven years, has left the tour and travel industry to become part of the marketing team for Theisen Supply Inc. before her tenure at Macy’s, Hanson was social media and marketing manager for Brand USA. She also worked as manager of national council relations for the U.S. Travel Association, and as public relations and marketing manager for the Sonoma County Tourism Bureau.