Brad Dean has been appointed as CEO of the new Puerto Rico Destination Marketing Organization. The news comes one day after he announced his resignation as the president and CEO of the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce President.
“Brad has an impressive track record of revenue growth, destination marketing, product development and community-building, both in the public and private sectors,” Chairman Jon Borschow said in a news release. “He is a proactive and influential leader with nearly 25 successful years in the travel, tourism, meetings, and hospitality industry, and we are delighted to have him as our CEO.”
The not-for-profit organization was created in March 2017 through bi-partisan legislation, a news release states. It provides a $25 million annual investment to manage global marketing, sales and promotion of Puerto Rico.
"Right now, there's no community that needs more strengthening than Puerto Rico, and there are no people that need the power of tourism at work for them more than our fellow American citizens than Puerto Rico," Dean said in a video. "I'm excited, and frankly humbled, at the opportunity to do my part to help lead Puerto Rico out of a desperate situation, using the power of travel."
Dean said in the video he started his career in Puerto Rico. It's also where he met his wife, Myriam.
Dean announced his resignation from the chamber during a news conference Tuesday afternoon.
"It is with a deep, deep sense of profound gratitude and humility that I offer my resignation today," Dean said. "For me, this is a season of change, and for me, this was not an easy decision, I assure you that."
Dean joined the chamber in 1998 as CFO, and became CEO in 2003.
Carla Schuessler, MBACC board chair, attributed his accomplishments to bringing national events to the area, doubling air service, growing the number of chamber members and acting as an advocate for Interstate 73.
No replacement or interim has been named. According to a release from the chamber, Dean will stay with organization for two months while candidates are being recruited.
"The tourism industry in Myrtle Beach is set to accomplish some great things in 2018, likely reaching the major milestone of 20 million visitors this year." Dean said in the video. "I'll miss being apart of this exciting future for Myrtle Beach, but I'll take great joy in knowing I played a small role in the success of this wonderful community."