ACRA chooses a new leader | AspenTimes.com

ACRA chooses a new leader

Jennifer Davoren
Aspen Times Staff Writer

Hana Pevny

An Aspen resident was announced Sunday as the new president and CEO of the Aspen Chamber Resort Association, ending a nearly two-month search.

Hana Pevny, a veteran of both Cisco Systems, a networking corporation, and Wang Laboratories, a computer services firm, will take over for current President Chris Nolen on April 26.

“After 18 years in sales and marketing in information technology, one of my goals was to find a challenging professional position in Aspen,” Pevny said in an ACRA press release. “I’m delighted to have been selected and am looking forward to representing our community.”

Pevny was selected from a roster of eight candidates, including former Aspen Mayor Rachel Richards. All were interviewed by a five-person search committee led by Aspen Skiing Co. CEO John Norton.

Pevny was not available for further comment Sunday night.

Molly Campbell, chairwoman of the ACRA board, said each candidate was rated on their experience as well as their responses to a list of eight questions. She praised Pevny’s knowledge of Aspen.

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“She was thoughtful and concise in the way she answered the questions,” Campbell said. “She knew a lot about the community.

“Hana was our top choice, and we’re delighted she’s accepted.”

Campbell said Pevny made the permanent move to Aspen three years ago, but was a frequent visitor before that. Though Pevny hasn’t lived here for very long, Campbell said she expected her experience in previous management positions to serve her well in her new position.

“I think that, as a community, we have to have respect that different people bring different skills to the community, no matter how long they’ve lived here,” Campbell said.

Though Nolen was not included in the search committee that named her successor, she said that she supported the chamber’s choice.

“I met her [Pevny] last Thursday,” Nolen said. “I find her very bright, and apparently she has a very strong technological background, which I would think is absolutely what the chamber needs right now.”

Nolen said the ACRA will need a tech-minded president as the chamber works to establish a visitor inquiry database and redevelop its Web site. Pevny’s “acute sort of appreciation for customer relations” should help the chamber with its goals, Nolen said.

One hurdle the new president must overcome in her first few months on the job, Nolen said, will be budgetary concerns. However, Nolen reported that Pevny has already discussed seeking additional sponsorships that could beef up the chamber’s budget.

“She will have to hit the ground running in terms of planning for a budget that does not have American Express corporation sponsorship,” Nolen said. “The chamber budget will look different this year than it has in the past.”

Pevny will work alongside Nolen during her last two weeks on the job, officially taking over for Nolen on April 26.

Nolen, who resigned her post in early February after three years on the job, will return to her consulting firm, Chris Nolen Inc., which she formed in 1992.