City of Natchez receives 28 applications for CVB director position

Published 12:43 am Tuesday, November 1, 2016

NATCHEZ — Nearly 30 candidates have applied to be the next director of the Natchez Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Mayor Darryl Grennell said 28 applications have been submitted and are currently being reviewed by the committee charged with vetting applicants.

The director position was left vacant after former director Kevin Kirby was terminated in April following ongoing personnel issues at the CVB. The board of aldermen also asked for the resignations of the Natchez Convention Promotion Commission, which oversees the operations of the CVB.

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Search committee chair and Natchez National Historical Park Superintendent Kathleen Bond said the applications are a mix of candidates from Natchez, the region and others part of the country with various backgrounds.

Bond said the committee would conduct in-person and video-call interviews next week.

Once the committee creates a short list of candidates, the Natchez Board of Aldermen will then interview the final candidates.

Grennell has said he would like to have a director in place by the end of the year.

Bond said she thinks that is a feasible timeline.

“I think it’s still possible that we could have someone in place by Jan. 1,” she said.

The committee is comprised of Bond, Ward 1 Alderwoman Joyce Arceneaux-Mathis, Ward 3 Alderwoman Sarah Smith, Ward 4 Alderwoman Felicia Irving, Natchez Convention Promotion commissioners Lance Harris, Helen Moss Smith and Mary Lee Toles, Visit Mississippi Director Craig Ray and tourism research consultant Berkeley Young, who conducted research studies for Natchez.

Bond said the process of searching for a director has encouraged her.

“The group is working together so well,” she said. “I think it’s a good process, and I’m very pleased to be a part of it, because I want to see a good partner in place.”