Visit Jacksonville Announces Retirement of President/CEO

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – October 6, 2017 – Visit Jacksonville announced today that its President & CEO, Paul Astleford, has informed the board of directors and staff that he will be retiring from the organization.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – October 6, 2017 – Visit Jacksonville announced today that its President & CEO, Paul Astleford, has informed the board of directors and staff that he will be retiring from the organization. Astleford, who joined Visit Jacksonville in 2013, has made his decision based on the fact that the Tourist Development Council (TDC) recently completed a new contract with Visit Jacksonville and it being the end of the fiscal year for the organization. 

“With the start of the new fiscal year and the fact that the new 5-year contract is in place, I feel that the timing of my departure will not be disruptive to the team,” said Astleford. “Over the past several years, I have been fortunate to put in place a strong group of people who are all talented and work well together. The time is right for me to do what I planned to do soon – step aside and start a new chapter in my life with my wife and family. We plan to stay in Jacksonville and I look forward to staying active in the community that we have adopted as our forever home.”

During his time at Visit Jacksonville, Astleford lead the organization to reach the following results:

  • Visitor spending rose from $2 billion in 2013 to $3.2 billion in 2015 and has continued to increase since then
  • Bed Tax income in Jacksonville rose from $15.5 million in 2013 to $22.9 million in 2016
  • Hospitality jobs increased from 22,000 in 2013 to 55,000 in 2016

 “Paul joined Visit Jacksonville at an important point in time for our organization and we are thankful for his service, commitment to the community and how he has worked with both the staff and board making Jacksonville a stronger destination for travel and tourism,” said Bill Prescott, chairman of the Visit Jacksonville Board of Directors.  “We look forward to being able to call upon him for advice and counsel and having him as a valuable resource.” 

Prescott said the Visit Jacksonville Executive Committee had been discussing a succession plan, but wanted to wait to start the process pending the outcome of the new TDC contract process. Until that time, he will work closely with the staff leadership to manage the day-to-day operations of Visit Jacksonville. 

 

About Visit Jacksonville

Visit Jacksonville is a DMAI accredited Destination Marketing Organization contracted by the Duval County Tourist Development Council (TDC) to champion the growth of business and leisure tourism in Northeast Florida. For a closer look at all there is to see and do in Jacksonville, go to www.VisitJacksonville.com or contact 800-733-2668.