Ocala/Marion County Visitors and Conventions Bureau
February 22, 2011
Two New Members Join Marion County TDC
Ocala, Fla. – Local hoteliers Jeff Bailey and Navroz Saju recently joined Marion County’s Tourist Development Council.
“Both men bring extensive travel and tourism experience to the TDC,” said Ann Sternal, Executive Director of the Ocala/Marion County Visitors & Convention Bureau. “The VCB team and everyone on the Tourist Development Council looks forward to serving our community with them.”
Jeff Bailey is the new General Manager of the Hilton Ocala. With more than 25 years in the hospitality industry, he has held the position of General Manager at hotels in Texas, Nebraska and Missouri. He also served on the Visitor Improvement Council of Douglas County (Omaha), where he helped pass legislation providing a general fund allocation to tourism for the first time in more than 20 years in Nebraska.
Navroz Saju is President and CEO of HDG Hotels, which manages seven properties in North Central Florida. HDG Hotels in Marion County include the Howard Johnson Inn, Sleep Inn and Suites, and Holiday Inn Express Silver Springs. He is Co-Chair of the Wyndham Worldwide Green Committee, a Certified Hotel Administrator of the American Hotel & Lodging Association and active in other industry associations and committees.
The TDC was created in 2004, when a county ordinance established a two percent “bed tax” on transient accommodations to support and grow the local tourism industry. The Marion County Board of County Commissioners formed the nine-member volunteer TDC to oversee the application of these funds to attract leisure, group and business travel to the community.
The Ocala/Marion County Visitors & Convention Bureau functions as the TDC’s operational arm. Attending trade shows and sales conferences, working with community groups, responding to visitor and group-travel inquiries are some of the VCB’s key day-to-day functions.