Bill Blaziek, head of El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau, announces retirement [El Paso Times, Texas]
(El Paso Times (TX) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Sept. 18--Bill Blaziek, who for more than a decade led efforts to promote El Paso and bring more tourists to the city, is retiring as general manager of the El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Blaziek's upcoming retirement was announced Tuesday by SMG, a private company that has run the El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau since 2000.
"My time in El Paso has been the most enjoyable part of my career. I am very proud of the growth and achievements of this community," Blaziek said in a statement.
He could not be reached for comment Tuesday evening.
Blaziek became general manager of the El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau in early 2002, according to El Paso Times archives.
SMG runs the El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau along with the Judson F. Williams Convention Center, the Abraham Chavez Theatre, the Plaza Theatre and the McKelligon Canyon pavilion.
During Blaziek's tenure, El Paso restored the Plaza Theatre, which has become a popular venue for concerts and stage shows and a cornerstone in the revitalization of Downtown. The city's tourism business also had to deal with the fallout from the violence in Juarez that hurt efforts to lure visitors.
The visitors bureau is currently promoting the "El Paso. It's All Good" campaign
that is aimed at encouraging El Pasoans to promote events, including through social media, billboards and other media.
Blaziek had said that the campaign was formed after a task force was created to counter a negative image of El Paso because of the violence in Juarez, The campaign aims to promote the positive aspects of El Paso.
Blaziek has worked for more than 40 years in the hotel and tourism marketing industry. Before coming
to El Paso, Blaziek worked in Atlantic City, N.J.
SMG said that current Assistant General Manager Bryan Crowe will be promoted to general manager and that Blaziek will stay on through Nov. 15 to will help with the transition.
Crowe has worked for the El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau since 2004 when he was hired as director of operations for the civic center. He was named assistant general manager in 2006.
Crowe said he was excited about leading the organization and representing the city.
"I'm looking forward to leading the organization and continuing the success we have found with Bill," Crowe said.
"We have a great story to tell" about El Paso, he said.
He said the investment of a new Triple-A baseball stadium Downtown and other development projects puts "El Paso in a really great position."
Before coming to El Paso, Crowe was assistant director for cultural events for the city of Portage, Mich., according to El Paso Times archives.
Daniel Borunda may be reached at 546-6102.
(c)2013 the El Paso Times (El Paso, Texas)
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