The Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau has named David Whitaker as its new president and CEO. Whitaker had previously worked with the GMCVB from 1990 to 2007, leaving his post as executive vice president and chief marketing officer to serve as president and CEO of Tourism Toronto, which is now known as Destination Toronto.
For the past five years, Whitaker has been president and CEO of Choose Chicago. Under his leadership, the city was voted Best Big City to visit by Condé Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards for four consecutive years.
"David brings back to us a rare and powerful combination — an immense wealth of experience and knowledge of our community, coupled with a significant world of experiences gained from promoting two of North America's most diverse and global brands in Chicago and Toronto," said Bruce Orosz, CEO of ACT Productions and chairman of the GMCVB.
The bureau conducted a comprehensive six-month executive search to find Whitaker, using a 14-member search committee comprised of local business and community leaders who reflect Miami-Dade County’s ethnic, racial, gender and sexual orientation diversity, as well as the diversity of certain associations and industries in Miami-Dade County, particularly the hospitality industry.
Whitaker takes on his new role at the GMCVB on Aug. 16. The current president, Bill Talbert, will remain at the bureau until October 2022 to assist with the transition process.
"I am honored, thrilled and blessed to have the opportunity to return home," said Whitaker. "I am joining an incredible team in place with a long legacy, and decades of promoting Greater Miami and Miami Beach as one of the world's most distinctive and desired brands."