This Just In

Kathleen Canning Named Executive Director of Orange County Convention Center


Orlando, FL – Kathleen Canning was promoted to executive director of Orlando’s Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) on December 5th during Expo! Expo!  It was perfect timing, enabling her friends, colleagues and customers to join in celebrating her latest achievement.

Mayor Teresa Jacobs made the announcement the week Orlando hosted the 2012 International Association of Exhibition and Events (IAEE) Expo! Expo! at the OCCC.

“Ms. Canning is an exceptional leader who is well-respected, not only within Central Florida, but throughout the hospitality industry,” Jacobs said. “Her knowledge and experience are invaluable.”

Canning has been with the OCCC since 1984, and over the past 28 years, has contributed mightily to the sales, planning and development of the center’s expansion projects.  As general manager, she handled the day-to-day management; directed the activities of the operations, event services, information services and business divisions; and responded to outside businesses and tourism organizations. She will continue to oversee all financial, marketing and operational activities at the center. She had been named general manager in July when Jessie Allen retired and now is moving up as current Executive Director Tom Ackert retires.

“It is my goal to meet our promise to increase the convention center’s economic impact and provide unparalleled guest service,” Canning said.

Canning’s position as general manager was not immediately filled. The search process for candidates was to begin in the near future.

The OCCC is one of the largest and busiest convention centers in the U.S. The facility offers 2,100,000 square feet of prime exhibit space and is ranked No. 2 after Chicago’s McCormick Place on the Trade Show Executive World’s Top Convention Center rankings.  Along with plenty of elbow room, the OCCC offers a warm year-round climate and close proximity to major hotels, amusement parks and attractions.

Mayor Jacobs will present Canning’s promotion to the executive director position to the Board of County Commissioners on December 18th.

Reach Kathleen at (407) 685-9800 or kathie.canning@occc.netg 

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