RCVB's New Executive Director: Andy Williams
Andy, I’d like to introduce you to Roswell. And Roswell, this is Andy Williams.
Visit Roswell selects Andy Williams to be Executive Director, officically replacing retired executive director Dotty Etris on January 1, 2019. Join us in welcoming Andy and his family to Roswell.
VISIT ROSWELL (Roswell Convention & Visitors Bureau) incorporates targeted advertising and marketing programs with aggressive sales and public relations efforts to ensure an image of Roswell as a destination and provides leadership for the tourism & hospitality industry here. Starting 2019 off with a brand new leader, the organization continues to focus on maximizing the economic impact gained from tourism.
Each year, visitors to Roswell make an impact on the lives of small business owners and their employees by staying overnight in our hotels, dining in our restaurants, shopping in our galleries and boutiques, reading our local magazines and enjoying our breweries, bars and live music venues. We welcome every single one of them with our signature modern spirit and southern soul, sure to let them know we’d love to see them again.
Before he formally became executive director on Jan. 1, we sat down with Andy Williams to find out who he is. As much affection as we have for (now retired) executive director Dotty Etris, we were a little skeptical to meet this person who will be taking her place, without our permission (lol). After about thirty seconds, it was clear to us the executive search team had made an excellent pick. The rapport between he and Dotty was authentic, trustworthy and conveyed a shared enthusiasm for what’s next; so much so that we couldn’t help but be swept up in their joint Roswell ‘pitch’ ourselves.
With so many great things on the horizon for Roswell, we found it fascinating to be able to observe the smooth changing of the guard first-hand. It appears to us this move is more of a ‘passing of the baton’ than a brand new start, as it feels as if Andy and his wife Ryan have been part of this community for years already.
That’s a testament to Roswell hospitality - unique in its own right - but also to Andy and Ryan’s authentic presentations and likability. They fit right in and are already calling Roswell home, while they house hunt for a place to plant their roots. Ryan and Andy have two children, ages two years and three months, and are quite a team. We have already seen them out enjoying a date night at Monkey 68, Table & Main and Deep Roots Wine Market.
Background & Qualifications
After graduating Georgia Southern University with a degree in Tourism and Commercial Recreation, Andy went to work as the Project Coordinator for the Madison Convention & Visitors Bureau. It was here he cut his teeth on hospitality marketing and tourism with a variety of a modern tourism professional’s responsibilities, including serving as the 'Camera Ready' liaison for the county to provide assistance in scouting film locations with production companies - resulting in the production of three major films. During his four (+) years with MCVB, his gift for leadership was evident early on, as he served as President of Morgan County Rotary Club from 2009 to 2010.
Next, Andy served as Director of Sales for the Convention & Visitors Bureau of Dunwoody, coordinating and implementing the business development efforts of the CVBD with a goal of increasing occupancy in the city's five hotels, resulting in an estimated $12.9 million economic impact within the city limits. It was then he was recognized as an industry leader in the faith-based sector publication Rejuvenate Magazine’s “40 Under 40” feature in the August/September 2012 issue and was also was awarded MPI - GA Chapter's Rising Star of the Year in 2013.
He expanded his tourism knowledge moving over to serve as Director of Sales & Business Development for Destination South Meetings & Events, a recognized leader within the Greater Atlanta hospitality community which provides innovative and transformative event experiences for clients worldwide. He spent four years with DSME growing and strengthening relationships with Atlanta-area hotel professionals and their strategic partners, and he widened his breadth of tourism leadership understanding by closely managing sales and budget processes. During his time with DSME, Andy was heavily involved with MPI - GA chapter, recognized as “Chapter Leader of the Year,” “Supplier Leader of the Year,” and served as chapter president. In 2018, Andy was recognized as one of “25 Young Event Pros to Watch in 2018” in the July issue of Special Events Magazine.
"Andy has the technical skill set, creativity, and energy to move us forward in our effort to bring more visitors to Roswell," said Ken Davis, chair of the Visit Roswell Search Committee and president of the North Georgia Region for Renasant Bank. "Coupled with his career experience in destination marketing, we are excited to have him lead our team."
"Roswell is a destination made up of a growing number of amazing assets in terms of tourism – a community with a great story to tell," Williams said. "I look forward to building upon the foundations that have been established by Dotty. With new hotels scheduled for construction in Roswell and the mix of existing venues, I believe there is an excellent opportunity to grow the economic impact of Visit Roswell." ANDY WILLIAMS
We so happy to meet you, Andy and Ryan! Welcome to Roswell!