President/CEO Stephanie Nowack Announces Retirement from the Tempe Tourism Office

For immediate release:
June 20, 2017

Contact: Toni Smith, Director of Communications
[email protected]
800-283-6734 or 480-894-8158

Tempe, Ariz. – The Tempe Tourism Office announced today that Stephanie Nowack, President/CEO, will retire after more than 18 years at the organization. Nowack is expected to remain in her current position through the end of 2017.

Nowack joined the Tempe Tourism Office, then known as the Tempe Convention & Visitors Bureau, in 1999. Her prior experience in both the for profit and nonprofit worlds had given her the perfect skill set needed to lead the tourism office. A graduate of Colorado State University and Arizona State University, Nowack’s previous job experience included strategic planning, marketing, advertising, public relations and event management at The Arizona Bank, Valley of the Sun United Way and Motorola.

Nowack was selected as the second CEO to lead the organization, following its founder, Sandy Hecomovich, who began the organization in 1988.

“Stephanie Nowack is an exceptional leader who contributed to Tempe’s respected position in the growing tourism industry,” said Michael Reed, Senior Director of Programs & Organizational Initiatives at ASU Gammage and Tempe Tourism Office Board Chair. “On behalf of the Board of Directors, I want to thank her for her inspirational leadership, her impact on the community and her passion to make our city a better place. The Tempe Tourism Office is well respected, well-funded and positioned for continued success.”

In the next few weeks, the Board of Directors will form a committee to conduct a national search for the next President/CEO.

Tourism in Tempe

In her 18 years at the Tempe Tourism Office, she has been a witness to, and part of the transformation of the tourism industry, both in Tempe and the Valley.

“In 1999, I stood on the shores of Tempe Town Lake as the water began to flow for the very first time,” Nowack commented. “I have watched with awe and enthusiasm as the community’s investment in the lake and Tempe Beach Park has attracted hundreds of events to Tempe and positioned Tempe as a sought-after destination.”

Speaking about the organization, Daryl Crawford, former Board Chair and General Manager of Papago Golf Course, said, “Stephanie has created a dynamic, talented and admired team with unmatched longevity. Half of the staff members have worked at the Tempe Tourism Office for 15 years or more.”

Nowack prides herself in leading her team to become innovators. Some innovative initiatives and organizational accomplishments are included in Addendum A.   

Commitment to the Community

Starting as a public relations volunteer for the Fiesta Bowl in the mid-1970s, Stephanie has always been active in the community.

  • She is a current board member of:
    • DMA (Destination Marketing Association) West
    • Tempe Chamber of Commerce
    • ASU Tourism Advisory Council
    • Arizona Lodging & Tourism Association
  • She is a past board member of:
    • Tempe Sports Authority
    • Downtown Tempe Community
  • Graduate of Valley Leadership and Phoenix Police Academy
  • Participant in 2012 Dancing with the Stars, where she raised more than $35,000 for the Arizona Kidney Foundation
  • Volunteer at Hohokam Elementary and the Boys and Girls Club
  • Adjunct faculty member at ASU, teaching a special events class
  • Faculty at ASU’s Non Profit Leadership Institute (now known as Lodestar), where she taught marketing for 20 years

Believing it is important to lead by example, Nowack conveyed a spirit of community service to her team. Over the years, the Tempe Tourism staff has volunteered together at a variety of organizations including:

  • Mary’s Food Bank
  • Tempe Community Action Agency
  • Feed My Starving Children
  • Salvation Army Christmas Angel Program

“I am so proud of our team, everything we have accomplished, and the positive reputation we have built,” said Nowack. “I am humbled to have worked with an extraordinary group of community leaders, led by our Board Chair, Michael Reed. Representing a dynamic and vibrant city such as Tempe for the last 18 years has been my sincere honor and a privilege.”

For interviews with Stephanie Nowack, please contact her at the tourism office at 480-894-8158. For photos, please contact Toni Smith at [email protected] or use this link to download a headshot of Nowack.


The Tempe Tourism Office is a non-profit organization devoted to marketing Tempe, Arizona as a desirable visitor and group destination site. To learn more about Tempe, please call 480-894-8158 or visit us at

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