February 01, 2002
Meetings & Conventions: Incentive News

Peggy Whitman (left), president of SITE, and Jill Harrington, outgoing CEO Jill Harrington, the executive vice president/CEO for the New York City-based Society of Incentive & Travel Executives, has announced her resignation from the organization, effective March 31.

Harrington, who headed SITE for the past two years, told M&C the organization would be better served by a CEO with an association management background.

“I’m a sales and marketing person and a strategist; what SITE requires [in a leader] now is different than what it was two years ago,” she said. Harrington, who has 20 years of industry experience, is weighing her options for the future and expects to remain in the incentive field.

Harrington had notified SITE’s board of her decision late last summer, but in the wake of Sept. 11, she requested the announcement not be made public until late December. According to Peggy Whitman, SITE’s president, the board has been extremely satisfied with Harrington’s performance.

A search committee to find Harrington’s replacement has been formed. Headed by Carolyn Dow, SITE’s immediate past president, the committee is expected to present candidates to the board this month.

Whitman, who also is a member of the search committee, is not convinced an association management background is the most critical skill required of Harrington’s replacement. “We’ll look at both types of candidates incentive industry leaders as well as association management professionals,” she said. Whitman added that an interim CEO might be hired to fill the position immediately, which would allow both the search committee and the board adequate time to find an ideal permanent replacement.

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