Your colleagues are on the move, find out who is going where.
Karen Williams and Cleo Battle
Karen Williams, president and CEO of Louisville Tourism, will finish her 30-year tenure at Louisville’s destination marketing organization on June 30. Williams has worked in the hospitality industry for 40 years. She retired as executive vice president of Louisville Tourism in 2012 and returned as CEO in 2014. Current chief operating officer Cleo Battle will head the city’s tourism agency upon William’s retirement. This is Battle’s second time filling Williams’ role, as he was appointed executive vice president in 2013 before being named chief operating officer in 2019. He has worked in the hospitality industry for 34 years. Before coming to Louisville, Battle spent 12 years as vice president of sales and services for the Richmond Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Brenda Hatton-Ficklin and Clay Moon
Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau (LRCVB) has hired Brenda Hatton-Ficklin as sales director for multicultural and religious markets. Hatton-Ficklin will be responsible for securing future business in these key niche market segments as meeting planners begin to book meetings again after being forced to cancel due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Hatton-Ficklin has more than 20 years of experience in developing and implementing organizational processes for effective management and allocation. She joins LRCVB from Little Rock’s Philander Smith College, where she served as director of alumni relations.
Clay Moon has also joined the LRCVB team and will serve as senior sales director for national associations. Moon has spent his career in hotel management, including 25 years with Drury Hotels.
Hyatt Regency Houston has appointed John Schafer as managing director. He joins the hotel from Grand Hyatt New York, where he previously served as general manager and area vice president. Schafer will oversee the unveiling of the renovation to the community, including a complete refurbishment of the property’s guestrooms and meeting venues. Schafer has more than 40 years of experience working with Hyatt Corporation, and has served as general manager and managing director at large convention hotels throughout the country.