Naples, Marco Island, Everglades Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive Director, Jack Wert, Stepping Down
Long-Time Tourism Leader to Pass the Reins on to Deputy Director, Paul Beirnes
Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades CVB announces that Jack Wert, the well-known figurehead of Collier County's Tourism Division has announced plans to retire from his post, effective September 30, 2021. The highly respected and well-seasoned executive has held his position as Executive Director in Collier County since 2002. During his tenure he elevated the profile of the destination significantly, bringing the Southwest Florida gem to its current ranking as one of the top luxury and travel destinations in the U.S. Wert's steady leadership and strategic marketing efforts made a significant, positive impact on the economic vitality of the region, increasing visitation by 53%. The destination currently welcomes over 2M visitors annually.
A tireless advocate for the travel and tourism industry locally, nationally and internationally, Wert has made a notable impact on the value of the industry towards the economic viability of Collier County and Southwest Florida. After an eleven-year commitment to the creation and growth of the Seminole County Florida CVB, Wert turned his business acumen and marketing prowess towards a new challenge in Collier County. Post 9/11 disruptions to the travel industry required stealth and diligence to overcome. He was at the helm of several high-profile projects including a full re-branding and advertising campaign that propelled the destination to a new level of sophistication, and the ground-breaking and opening of the $150 million Paradise Coast Sports Complex. Both projects put the destination front and center to new national and international audiences.
He also made a tremendous impact on local communities and constituencies that depend on tourism for their livelihood through his tireless efforts and initiatives throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. His successes have made him a well know figure in the halls of the state capitol in Tallahassee and on Capitol Hill in D.C. as a representative for the industry. A steadfast community and tourism champion, Wert has been on numerous Boards of Directors including VISIT Florida, Destinations International, Destinations Florida, Florida Gulf Coast University's Resort & Hospitality School and SKAL International Southwest Florida, among others.
The most recent challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic truly highlighted his expertise and leadership as he navigated the destination through the economic downturn and eventual re-opening of the region's travel and tourism sector.
Highlights of Wert's career include being honored with HSMAI's Most Extraordinary Minds in Sales & Marketing award. He holds the designation of Certified Destination Management Executive (CDME), and Professional in Destination Management (PDM).
"Words cannot express the emotion I feel today, as I step away from my position at the CVB and embark on new endeavors that I have been planning for a while now," said Naples, Marco Island, Everglades CVB Executive Director, Jack Wert. "I am proud of what I have been able to accomplish at the CVB and in this industry, and I am looking forward to contributing to future successes in the tourism industry. The importance of this industry as an economic driver for the region and the state is undeniable and I will now be able to pursue these very important advocacy issues in the future."
Oversight of the department will transition to Paul Beirnes, our seasoned destination marketer who is currently serving as the Deputy Director of the CVB, over the upcoming three-month period, starting July 1, 2021. Beirnes joined Naples, Marco Island, Everglades CVB in November 2020 as Deputy Director of Tourism following a 35-year career within the Destination Marketing industry occupying executive leadership roles with The Walt Disney Company, Visit Orlando, and Hilton Corporate.
About Naples, Marco Island, Everglades Convention & Visitors Bureau
Public Relations & Communications Manager
Naples, Marco Island, Everglades CVB
T: +1 239-252-2379