Dial is president and CEO of Sara Dial & Associates, a consulting firm specializing in site selection, government relations, and economic and community development. She also helps lead the Discovery Triangle, a nonprofit services company that hopes to form a coordinated, regional force for urban redevelopment.
Surprising fact: “I was a nationally-ranked competitive swimmer as a child. It taught me the skills to be successful in business and life: self-discipline, focus, drive and teamwork.”
Biggest challenge: “In 2008, Mayor Phil Gordon challenged me to create a big idea around urban revitalization. After months of research and outreach, the Discovery Triangle, a new approach to regional urbanism, was born. Today, the Discovery Triangle region is thriving.”
The Mesa Convention & Visitors Bureau (Mesa CVB) along with their board of directors has named Marc Garcia president and chief executive officer. The announcement comes after a six-month absence in the position following the passing of Robert Brinton last October.
“We welcome Mr. Garcia to Mesa and are excited to have him lead us into the next era of tourism,” said Gary Levine, board chair for the Mesa CVB. “His leadership style and knowledge of the Greater Phoenix marketplace are in line with our vision for tourism growth as our community works to further Mesa’s reputation as a leading destination in the Southwest.”
Garcia comes to Mesa after serving 15 years at the Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau. Garcia most recently held the position of vice president of visitor marketing and community development where he oversaw the Travel Industry Sales, Convention Services & Housing, Government Affairs and Sports Sales departments. During Garcia’s tenure he helped lead the Phoenix bureau’s sales and service efforts for high-profile national events including Super Bowl XLII, NBA All-Star Weekend 2009, WrestleMania XXVI and 2011 MLB All Star Summer. Garcia also served as the former executive director of the Greater Phoenix Multi-Cultural and Arts Foundation within the bureau. Garcia was a key leader in the advocacy effort that led to the expansion of the Phoenix Civic Plaza Convention Center and most recently he booked more than 67,000 room nights for youth/amateur sports events in the last fiscal year.
“Mr. Garcia has a proven track record of performance all developed within Phoenix’s regional tourism sector,” said City of Mesa Economic Development Director William Jabjiniak. “We are confident Marc is the right choice for Mesa as we continue our efforts to build an in-demand destination through key projects.”
Mesa is setting a fast pace as the leading destination marketing entity in the East Valley with continued growth taking place at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, new higher education developments within the city’s downtown core, and signature visitor products about to take hold including the Metro light rail expansion and the Chicago Cubs stadium development. Garcia is a graduate of Pitzer College with a bachelor’s of arts degree in political studies. Garcia, an Arizona native, will begin his employment at the Mesa Convention & Visitors Bureau on June 11.