Mobile, Ala. (February 1, 2023) — Visit Mobile announces plans to prepare for continued tourism growth in Mobile with changes within the organization which include internal promotions, structural shifts in the organization, and the hiring of a new team member.
Patty Kieffer has been promoted to senior vice president. Tom White has been hired as the new vice president of convention and leisure sales. Derrick Williams has been promoted to director of multicultural accounts. Brittany Gagliano, partnership manager, has revived the Visit Mobile partnership program model and will now manage a stand-alone partnership department.
“These changes will continue to enhance our Destination’s metrics, alignment, and community-shared values,” said Visit Mobile president & CEO, David Clark. “Visit Mobile is executing numerous initiatives and resources; it is time to expand our organization’s capacity to proactively execute for our future.”
Kieffer has worked for Visit Mobile for 23 years embracing the roles of convention sales manager, national sales manager, senior national sales manager, director of leisure tourism, and vice president of convention and leisure sales. She continues to earn the right to lead with her passion for the destination, outstanding collaboration skills, work ethic, business results, and creativity, as well as the trust and respect of her team and colleagues throughout the country. Kieffer has served in several regional and national roles; Destinations International advocacy committee, Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) as a southeast board member and president, Meeting Professionals International committee, and is a Certified Association Sales Executive (CASE). In 2021, Kieffer earned the “Alabama Tourism Employee of the Year” award. As vice president of convention and leisure sales, her team doubled historical convention room night sales for our destination. She continues to collaborate with the cruise industry, Africatown destination development, and the local/regional hospitality communities. Kieffer will support the convention and leisure sales team, the marketing and communications team, as well as the partnership and administration teams.
White joins Visit Mobile on February 1 supporting the convention and leisure sales team. He most recently worked for Yedla Hotel Management Company as corporate director of marketing, supporting 22 properties where duties included group sales efforts, public relations, digital strategies, and working with the different hotel brands on marketing initiatives. Before Yedla Hotels, White was with the Huntsville Space & Rocket Center for 19 years as director of sales & outreach for the domestic and international markets where he and his teams created extensive programming and brought group tours domestically and internationally which added $20 Million in revenue growth to the organization. White has served on several boards, including the National Tour Association, Student & Youth Travel Association Foundation, the Alabama Travel Council, Alabama Restaurant & Hospitality Association, the Huntsville Madison County Hospitality Association, and Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association.
Williams has served in the hospitality industry for almost 30 years and has been a senior national sales manager with Visit Mobile for the last four years. He is one of the top diversity sales managers in the meetings and convention industry. Williams has represented multiple hotel brands, such as Hilton, Marriott, and The Fairmont Brands, and has been “Sales Manager of the Year” for both Marriott and Hilton International and has received numerous other awards. Williams currently serves as vice-chairman of the by-laws committee of the National Coalition of Black Meeting Planners and is a member of the NAACP and the RCMA (Religious Conference Management Association).
Gagliano has been collaborating locally and nationally to re-imagine the partnership model after a COVID-19-induced, three-year hiatus, during which Visit Mobile has supported but not charged dues to local partners. The new program will launch in March of this year. Gagliano brings a collaborative leadership approach to the organization and will support local hotels, restaurants, attractions, and other businesses to drive value and alignment to their business and the destination. Gagliano graduated from Mobile’s Spring Hill College, then worked with Mobile United where she was strongly engaged with the Mobile community for five years before joining the Visit Mobile team nine months ago.
Visit Mobile will continue to expand as tourism initiatives such as culinary travel, adventure travel/eco-tourism, and cultural heritage travel grow. For more information about job openings at Visit Mobile, visit mobile.org/about/staff/visitmobile-careers/.
About Visit Mobile:
Visit Mobile is the official destination marketing organization responsible for attracting visitors and conventions to the Mobile area. To learn more about our historic destination and find out why Mobile is the city that’s Born to Celebrate, visit mobile.org. This convention and visitors
bureau is an accredited Destination International Marketing Organization.
Emily Gonzalez | EGonzalez@Mobile.org | 251-289-0401