Mark Vaughan to Retire from Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau

Mark Vaughan, executive vice president and chief sales officer at Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB), will retire from the organization at the end of the year. He made the announcement during ACVB’s March board of directors meeting.

Vaughan’s decision comes after nearly two decades with the organization, serving as executive vice president of sales since September 2005. His oversight includes trade show and in-house sales, convention services and international sales. Vaughan was promoted in 2011 and added chief sales officer to his title. During his tenure, convention bookings increased from 1.3 million room nights to 1.7 million annually, while total visitation grew from 32 million to 57 million prior to the pandemic. ACVB’s sales team earned numerous awards under his leadership including multiple Stella Awards recognizing quality service and innovation to meeting professionals.

“Much of Atlanta’s growth and success as a destination has occurred under Mark’s leadership,” said William Pate, president and CEO, ACVB. “His efforts during the last two decades have generated tremendous economic impact and job growth for our industry and our city.”

During Vaughan’s time at ACVB, Atlanta has also been among the top convention cities in the country in leads and bookings. Vaughan’s teams have secured and serviced hundreds of major citywide conventions and sporting events including two NCAA Men’s Final Four tournaments (2013 and 2020), Super Bowl LIII (2019), two College Football Playoff National Championships (2018 and 2025) and FIFA World Cup (2026).

“Mark’s impact reaches far beyond Atlanta,” said Pate. “As a national hospitality leader, he has served as a board advisor to several organizations and a mentor to many individuals. It will be difficult to imagine our industry without him.”

Vaughan served on the board of directors for American Society for Association Executives (ASAE), ASAE Foundation, Association Forum and Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. He was also a member of the Federal Reserve Bank’s Tourism Advisory Council and chair of Atlanta Sports Council. In 2017, he was chosen for ASAE’s Class of Fellows, recognizing his individual accomplishments and contributions to ASAE and the association sector.

Prior to joining ACVB, Vaughan worked for Marriott International for 23 years in a variety of marketing and sales positions. A native of Lexington, Kentucky, Vaughan attended Eastern Kentucky University where he met his wife Cheryl. They have three children.

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