Westerville's new director for the Visitors and Convention Bureau plans to build off of past success to drive tourism to the city.

Executive Director Marie VanDervoort said the bureau will now offer complimentary site-search and selection services for meeting and event planners to help find locations for events across Westerville.

"It is my goal to build off of past successes and strengthen the value of our services within the community we serve," she said.

VanDervoort said she felt the position was a perfect fit because of her background in hospitality.

She has 17 years of on-property hotel experience and more than a decade of global sales experience with Intercontinental Hotels Group.

According to Glenda Mihaly, marketing coordinator for the bureau, VanDervoort was named to the position on Sept. 13.

The Westerville resident said the city has a lot to offer in terms of attractions to potential visitors.

"We have great hotels, a wide variety of restaurants, a cultural blend of retail and gallery shopping options, as well as parks and attractions," she said.

She said she plans to participate in more regional-based marketing to help highlight these to potential visitors.

VanDervoort was chosen to fill the role after a search to replace Jeff Hartnell, who had served as executive director of the bureau from 2006 up to his death in August 2018.

VanDervoort lives in Westerville with her husband, John.

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