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Sonoma County picks Nevada tourism honcho as CEO

Claudia Vecchio, head of Nevada’s tourism initiative ... Cynthia Sweeney covers health care, hospitality, residential real estate, education, employment and business insurance. Reach her at or call 707-521-4259.

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NORTH BAY BUSINESS JOURNAL | October 24, 2017, 3:55PM 10/24/2017 Order Article Reprint $(document).ready(function() { $('a.reprint').each(function() { console.log("Reprint: Starting Reprint Code"); var sArtURL, sPubName, sArtTitle, sDate, sURL; sArtURL = document.location.href; console.log("Reprint: URL = " + sArtURL); sPubName = "North Bay Business Journal"; sArtTitle = sArtHead; console.log("Reprint: Title = " + sArtTitle); sDate = $('#pubdate').text(); sURL = '' + '?field261=' + encodeURIComponent(sArtTitle) + '&field262=' + sDate + '&field260=' + sArtURL; $(this).attr({ href: sURL }); }); }); Claudia Vecchio, head of Nevada’s tourism initiative, will take over as Sonoma County Tourism’ new CEO on Nov1. She replaces Ken Fischang, who stepped down in MayInterim Sonoma County Tourism CEO Tim Zahner told the Las Vegas Review Journal that, after the fires, Vecchio will have plenty on her plate when she arrives. “Claudia is stepping into a situation where the community of Sonoma County and the board and staff of Sonoma County Tourism have come together to not only support one another in our time of need, but also to rally around and get the word out that we are open for business and ready to welcome visitors to the Northern California they love,” Zahner said. Vecchio leaves her position as the first director of the state Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, which consists of the Commission on Tourism, Division of Museums and History, Nevada Arts Council and the Nevada Indian Commission. “In addition to its extraordinary natural beauty, Sonoma County exudes an incredible spirit of independent thinking, creativity and fortitude that truly sets it apart from any other destination,” Vecchio said in a statement“The truest sense of this spirit has been on full display during the recent firesIt’s a privilege to join a team and represent a countywide tourism industry that can come together through challenging times to not only support one another, but also to rally around and get the word out that we are open for business and ready to welcome visitors to Northern California.” Vecchio said it should be a fairly easy transition on the marketing side, as Sonoma County has a few things in common with Nevada, like its independent, creative, maverick spirit. “It’s wineries versus casinos,” she said“They are important drivers, but I see so much more to talk about.” Vecchio long has been a fan of and visitor to Sonoma County, having family in Bodega BayUpon moving to Sonoma County, she had planned to rent, but after the destructive fires and the even tighter rental market, she is in the process of buying a home. Vecchio is a former president of Destination Integration in Dallas and head of Ohio’s tourism officeShe began working in Nevada in November 2011. She also has managed national brand launch campaigns for Taco Bell, Frito-Lay and Norwegian Cruise Lines and was on the promotion team that launched the Fox Broadcasting Network’s television programmingShe also was a tour manager for the international education and entertainment organization, Up With People. Zahner has been named chief operating officer and will continue to oversee marketing and communications efforts for Sonoma County Tourism. Cynthia Sweeney covers health care, hospitality, residential real estate, education, employment and business insuranceReach her at or call 707-521-4259. Most Popular Stories Latino Business Leadership Awards: Davin Cardenas, North Bay Organizing Project HR leaders take care of fire-stricken workers Sonoma Co., Santa Rosa OK measures to improve housing availability Latino Business Leadership Awards: Marisela Barbosa-Cortez, Green Hive Spaces Real cost of rebuilding a home may outstrip fire insurance money --> --> News NorthBay Wine Industry Leads & Research Opinion Resources Events Contact Find it Fast Banking and Finance Construction Employment Government Health Care Other Sections Hospitality Insurance Nonprofits Real Estate Technology Contact + Help Subscribe to the Journal Advertise Purchase an edition Editorial Department Frequently asked questions Subscribers Contact Us Events Business Leads Latest Research Book of Lists var _qevents = _qevents || []; (function() { var elem = document.createElement('script'); elem.src = (document.location.protocol == "https:" ? 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