AEG Facilities has announced the hiring of a new vice president for the firm’s expanded Convention Center Management and Services division.
The international sports, venue and entertainment organization named Brad Gessner vice president of convention centers.
“We recognize there is demand in the industry to change the model of success for great convention centers and destinations,” said Bob Newman, president, AEG Facilities. “As operators of some of the world’s most successful convention centers, we are in a position to utilize our unique resources to bring together community and hospitality industry stakeholders in a new and collaborative manner that will increase occupancy levels and bottom line performance at world-class facilities.”
AEG Facilities and its affiliates, including AEG Ogden, operate several major award-winning convention centers in Australia, Kuala Lumpur, Oman and Qatar. To assist in its expanding Convention Center Services and Management division, AEG Facilities hired Gessner to focus on implementing AEG’s industry-acclaimed resources network-wide and will further augment the company’s existing infrastructure.
“I’m thrilled to work with a highly talented team that has helped AEG Facilities grow its successful convention center business practice,” said Gessner. “The resources in place and entrepreneurial approach that AEG is known for will revolutionize the convention center industry.”
A 30-plus year industry veteran, Gessner comes to AEG Facilities from the San Diego Convention Center Corp., where he was the general manager of the 2.6 million square-foot convention center for six years. Earlier in his career, he was on the management team that opened the convention center in 1989.
Gessner’s expertise covers all aspects of public assembly facility management, including event management, convention services, labor negotiations, revenue generation and customer service programs. He is an industry leader in the areas of green practices, sustainable programs and facility design and operations.
Prior to working at the San Diego Convention Center, Gessner was the general manager of WestWorld of Scottsdale in Arizona and deputy general manager of the Del Mar Fairgrounds and Racetrack. In addition, he was the convention services manager for the Sheraton on Harbor Island and the facilities manager for the San Antonio Convention Center.
Gessner is an adjunct faculty professor and visiting lecturer for San Diego State University’s hospitality and tourism management department and has received several industry awards and chaired various public assembly facility committees.
AEG Facilities, a stand-alone affiliate of AEG, owns, operates or consults with more than 100 venues worldwide and across five continents, providing complete venue management as well as specialized programs in operations, guest services, ticketing, booking, sales and marketing.