Chicago – The Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau (CCTB) has tapped an executive with a strong sales and marketing background in the hotel sector to be its new President. Tim Roby, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Kerzner International Resorts, will join the CCTB on April 3rd, taking on the top role that has been in flux for several months. Chris Bowers resigned as CEO of the CCTB in August, halfway through his three-year contract, to become senior vice president of sales and marketing for NES Rental Holdings, Inc. Deborah Sexton, former bureau president, left in March 2005 to head up the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) as its president and CEO. Bill Utter was then named acting CEO. The CEO position has been eliminated and Utter is expected to return to his role as vice president of marketing.
Roby presently directs the sales and marketing efforts for Kerzner, a leading developer and operator of luxury resort hotels and gaming properties. The company owns Atlantis, a 2,317-room resort and casino located on Paradise Island in The Bahamas; operates One&Only, a five-star, deluxe brand with 10 properties; and developed The Mohegan Sun, now managed by the Mohegan Tribe. Roby was also the vice president of sales and marketing for MGM Grand Las Vegas and director of sales at the Grand Hyatt Dallas-Ft. Worth.
At Kerzner, the company’s core value is “Blow Away the Customer ™.” As CCTB president, Roby will use some of that same philosophy to exceed customer expectations and maintain Chicago’s role as a leading trade show city. Efforts to draw convention business to the city include changes in labor agreements and an expansion of McCormick Place, the nation’s largest exhibition facility. The addition of the West Building, which will open eight months ahead of schedule in July 2007, will expand the facility’s prime exhibit space from 2.2 million square feet to 2.6 million square feet.