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City Advertising for Tourism Director

Staff Reports

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city is looking for a new face — someone who will promote North Adams' cultural and recreational assets and partner with regional organizations with similar goals.

The position for a director of tourism and community events was posted on BerkshireJobs.com last week. The job appears to expand on what had been the director of the Mayor's Office of Tourism and Cultural Development.

According to the job posting, "This position will create an atmosphere that attracts, welcomes and supports existing and new cultural institutions and creative businesses, as well as artists and creative individuals of all disciplines into the city of North Adams."

The goal is to increase the number of visitors (and the amount of their spending) in the city by coordinating events with other entities and towns and promoting marketing intiatives. The director will also coordinate all city-sponsored activities, such as the Mayor's Downtown Celebration, the Northern Berkshire Food Festival, and sporting events among others. The person selected will also be expected to grow a volunteer corps and work with existing organizations.

The post requires a bachelor's degree in marketing or communications and several years experience in related marketing. The new director will also have to be able to handle the website, email marketing, social media and online strategies.

The tourism position had been filled for the past decade by Rod Bunt, a former WNAW radio host hired by the former administration. Bunt quit March 3 saying he was looking for opportunities in the private sector, but there had been speculation for months that he and Mayor Richard Alcombright weren't seeing eye to eye on the position's responsibilities. "I've been canned, sacked, terminated, booted, ...," he wrote on his "The Unemployment Diary," but later told the Transcript that it was a writing exercise for an obscure literary magazine.

Alcombright said the city would take the opportunity to expand and "carefully craft" the director's job description to incorporate more marketing skills. Within a couple weeks of Bunt's departure and before any job vacancy was posted, the city had received nearly three dozen resumes.

The director's post is currently an S-35, with a starting pay of $33,009. The advertisement does not give a wage estimate nor is it clear the position will be the same classification. Alcombright last year raised eyebrows when he pushed for a new classification for an administrative assistant that jumped the job's starting wage up several steps from the secretarial classification.

The city's also looking for a seasonal park security officer for Windsor Lake and the campground. The Parks & Recreation Commission discussed the post at its last meeting.

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