The Chattanooga Convention and Visitors Bureau’s new CEO and president is Barry E. White, who will first finish his time as CEO of the Augusta, Georgia, CVB, officials announced Thursday.
“The search committee was impressed by his proven track record of success in Augusta,” Chattanooga CVB board chair Keith Sanford said in a prepared statement. “Under his leadership, there has been a renewed focus on tourism growth and collaborating with elected officials and other partners at the local and state level to expand their convention center and bring new hotels to that city.”
White started as the director of sales in 1991 and was named CEO of the Augusta CVB three years later, according to a news release.
During his 23-year tenure as the Augusta CVB’s president and CEO, White completed the following accomplishments:
- Increased total hotel revenue every year since 1994, including an 18 percent increase from 2014 to 2016
- Initiated and fostered a $48 million expansion to the city’s convention center
- Designed and secured funding for a new $1.5 million city wayfinding and beautification project
- Developed a master plan identifying and prioritizing future tourism development projects
“I had the privilege of assisting with the production of the USA Cycling Pro Road National Championships in Chattanooga a few years ago,” White said. “Chattanooga is a wonderful community that understands the importance of a robust tourism industry. I look forward to forging many new partnerships to ensure the city remains one of the nation’s top destinations.”
White is a graduate of the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, where he received a bachelor’s degree in business administration and marketing. He is certified by the United States Chamber of Commerce’s Institute of Organizational Management.
He succeeds Bob Doak, who is retiring after more than 35 years in the tourism and hospitality industry, 15 of them as the president and CEO of the Chattanooga CVB.
The date of White’s first day on the job has not yet been determined, but Doak will remain at the CVB through February 2018 to assist in the leadership transition, according to a news release.