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by Kaylee Hultgren | March 24, 2010

Last week Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley appointed a seven-member interim board for the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, which owns and operates McCormick Place and Navy Pier. The board's previous chairman, John S. Gates, was reappointed as the group's head; just one other previous member, Peter O'Brien, vice president and COO of MADO Management, also was renamed to the board. Last month, the governor signed legislation that ousted the 13-member MPEA board, after the agency proposed legislation to turn union workers into public employees and prohibit labor strikes. Industry officials, associations and contractors, such as the International Association of Exhibitions and Events, the Exhibition Services and Contractors Association, Freeman and GES, had expressed concern over MPEA's proposal. The interim board will serve until a new permanent board is appointed.