The Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau (PWCVB) has named the bureau’s Vice President of Marketing and Communications Kristen Adamo as its president and CEO. She will assume her new role on April 25.
She succeeds Martha Sheridan who left the bureau in December to become President and CEO of the Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau.
“Kristen was selected after a thorough and comprehensive process led by a search committee working with Searchwide Global, an executive recruitment firm primarily focused on the travel and tourism industry,” Kimberly Greene, chairperson of the PWCVB board and the area general manager of TPG Hotels and Resorts said in a release.
“Kristen brings a diverse background of experience to the position which, combined with her strategic planning and marketing skills, make her the ideal candidate. We are so excited to have Kristen lead the organization as we continue to focus on driving the economic impact of tourism in the Providence and Warwick markets.”
Adamo said Friday she seeing lots of opportunity for the state.
“With the airport going gangbusters, it’s a pivotal time,” she said. She said with international flights, the bureau is seeing some international business.
“With more [air] service we’re seeing more events (booked in Providence and Warwick).”
She said affordable Warwick hotel rooms and facilities make it a good venue for sporting events. Military reunions is also a “niche” business for Warwick.
Adamo described Providence Warwick as a “second tier” venue when it comes to booking conventions and that its primary regional competitors are Hartford, Baltimore and Pittsburgh.
“We’re never going to have the huge meetings,” she said. She put the ideal size at 2,500 people. According to a release issued last July, the PWCVB and its subsidiary the Rhode Island Sports Commission hosted 238 groups that contracted 112,464 room nights in Providence and Warwick. The meetings, conventions and sporting events booked by the bureau for FY19 yielded $73,65 million in direct spending in the state.
With 22 employees, PWCVB operates on a $4 million budget that is largely funded through hotel tax revenues. The bureau also runs the Rhode Island Sports Commission that books sporting events and markets Providence.
Adamo joined the PWCVB in 2005 as the director of communications and was promoted to vice president in 2007. In that position, she has served as the primary architect for the PWCVB’s marketing and communications strategy, which includes advertising, public relations, collateral production, website management, special programs and social media. During her tenure, the PWCVB has launched successful marketing initiatives like Providence Restaurant Weeks, has seen Providence named “America’s Favorite City” in Travel Leisure magazine, and won an Outstanding Sports Marketing award from the National Association of Sports Commissions.
“It is an honor to lead this talented team at such a pivotal time,” Adamo said in a statement. “Tourism is an important economic driver for Rhode Island and both Providence and Warwick are experiencing extraordinary growth. I look forward to working with business and community leaders to continue that momentum and to promote our cultural and natural resources.”
Adamo has been named to Providence Business News’ “40 Under 40” list of Rhode Island’s most successful young businesspeople, was named Hospitality Ambassador of the year by the RI Hospitality Association in 2014 and received the Producer’s Golden Circle Award from the RI Film Festival. She currently serves on the boards of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), the Roger Williams Park Zoo, the Rhode Island Film Festival, and StyleWeek Northeast.
A Warwick resident, she is an alumna of Bay View Academy, Ohio Wesleyan University and Salve Regina University. Her first job as a college graduate was working at Warwick City Hall as deputy press secretary to former Mayor Charles Donovan.
(With reports from John Howell)