published Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

Center assigns Shuford top job

by Tamara Best

The Carter Street Corp., the body that oversees the Chattanooga Convention Center, named Mike Shuford as executive director Wednesday.

"We're excited about this opportunity, not only for Mike but for the convention center to continue on the good course that it has experienced," said Jimmy Hudson, board chairman. "We're hopeful that the effort shown by the entire staff during this interim period will continue."

The hiring of Mr. Shuford aborted a national search.

"He has experience I understand from Day 1 in the business and has shown in the last three to four months that he can handle the situation and people respond to him," said Don Mercer. "I think, he would make an excellent choice."

Mr. Shuford was the assistant executive director from August 1984 to January 2010 and succeeds Tim Riddle, who resigned earlier this year.

"As a partner to the convention center, the relationship since Mr. Shuford has been in the interim position has never been better," said Bob Doak, president of the Chattanooga Area Convention & Visitor's Bureau.

As interim executive director, Mr. Shuford has supervised 42 full-time employees and as many as 100 part-timers.

"It feels great," Mr. Shuford said after the unanimous vote.

Asked if he has any plans as executive director, Mr. Shuford had a simple response.

"I'm just going to keep doing what I'm doing."

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