LOUISVILLE, Ky. (July 22, 2019) – Louisville Tourism has announced the promotion of Cleo Battle to the newly created position of Chief Operating Officer. Battle has been serving as Executive Vice President for the community’s tourism marketing organization since 2013.
Battle overseas convention development, destination services, tourism development, and marketing and communication. He will cultivate strategic partnerships and revenue development strategies, initiatives, and priorities. In addition to establishing and maintaining ongoing effective communication and relationships with state and local government officials, business leaders, local hospitality industry stakeholders, national convention and event planners, and industry leaders. The COO will also manage a new Visitor Profile Study process and be engaged with a new Destination Strategic Master Plan as Louisville works to grow visitation from 16 million annual visitors to 25 million by 2030.
Said Louisville Tourism President & CEO Karen Williams, “As Louisville’s hotel inventory continues to grow and the city’s reputation in the group market strengthens, Cleo will work closely with the Convention Development team to identify new strategies within our market segments for higher rated group business.”
Battle has worked in the hospitality industry for 34 years. Prior to coming to Louisville, Battle spent 12 years as Vice President of Sales & Services for the Richmond Convention & Visitors Bureau in Richmond, Va. He also held the positions of Director of Sales and Sales Manager at the Richmond CVB. Battle began his hospitality career in the hotel industry working for Embassy Suites, Holiday Inn and Sheraton Hotels.
Battle is a native of Denver. He is a graduate of Metropolitan State College with a BA degree in Hotel/Restaurant Management. He earned his Master's of Business Administration in 1997 from Averett College in Virginia. He is both a Certified Destination Management Executive (CDME) and Certified Association Sales Executive (CASE). Battle serves locally on the Boards of the Louisville Zoo, Kentucky Derby Museum, and the YMCA. He serves on the national Board of Meeting Planners International.