Just days after the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce announced its new leader, the convention center next door is also making a change.
Fredia Brady, senior director of sales and marketing for the Savannah International Trade & Convention Center, said Wednesday she has been tapped to become general manager of the convention center, beginning Feb. 6.
Brady said she was unable to comment further, as she is still employed with the trade and convention center in Savannah.
Brady is a hospitality industry veteran with more than 25 years of experience in convention sales and marketing, business development, facility operations and event management.
Susan Eaton had been the GM since 2009. As of Wednesday the Wilmington Convention Center website no longer listed Eaton as the GM.
The Wilmington Convention Center is owned by the city of Wilmington and managed by SMG, a venue management, marketing and operations firm based in Philadelphia.
"We're very excited about Fredia in Wilmington," said SMG senior vice president Bob McClintock. "She is ideally suited for this position. Fredia’s experience will be invaluable as the Convention Center positions itself to support the rebranding of the River District and the opening of an adjacent Embassy Suites Hotel this year."
McClintock said that Eaton is "moving on to other opportunities."
“The city appreciates all the work Susan has done to make the center a success over these first few years and we look forward to working with our management company, SMG, and a new general manager to continue that success," said city spokesperson Malissa Talbert.
In an article in BusinessinSavannah.com on Jan. 20, Michael Owens, president of the Tourism Leadership Council, praised Brady
and her work there.
“This week, I found out that Savannah will be saying goodbye to a powerhouse in the tourism community,” Owens wrote. “Of course, we’re sad to see her go, but excited for Fredia Brady’s next opportunity as General Manager of the Wilmington Convention Center in North Carolina.”
“Just before the Savannah International Trade & Convention Center was slated to open, Fredia was tapped by SMG, the company that managed the building, to be the director of sales and marketing in March 1999. During her career with SMG, Fredia was promoted to senior regional director of sales and marketing," the article continued. “She has been the only one in that post, and this is where we say goodbye— but not before we acknowledge the lasting legacy and celebrate her many accomplishments. She just finished a convention that she helped bring to town. That one convention brought in $19 million of outside spending to Savannah."