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Industry Briefs

Unexpected passing of President and CEO Michael A. Finney prompts search

The Miami-Dade Beacon Council , the County's official public- private economic development partnership, announced recently a new Interim President and CEO following the unexpected passing of President and CEO Michael A. Finney on Sunday, April 3, 2022. The Beacon Council has appointed William D. Talbert III as Interim President and Chief Executive Officer until a new leader is identified by the search committee. Mr. Talbert was confirmed by The Beacon Council's Executive Committee.

Mr. Talbert stepped down as President and CEO of the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) in August 2021, when tourism industry veteran David Whitaker was appointed the organization's new leader. As part of his transition, Mr. Talbert remains in a consulting role with the GMCVB until October of this year. Given the Bureau's relationship with Beacon - sister organizations supporting economic development efforts and the destination marketing for Greater Miami for over 35 years - the GMCVB has agreed to honor Mr. Talbert's existing contract while he takes on the role of Interim President and CEO for The Beacon Council.

"The appointment of Bill Talbert as Interim President and CEO seems fitting after Mike's sudden, unexpected passing," said George Bermudez, 2021-2022 Chair for the Miami-Dade Beacon Council and Senior Vice President, Miami Business Banking Market Executive for Bank of America. "Bill has over 30 years of experience working for this community. He understands what an organization like ours needs in a time like this, and we have no doubt that he will help us continue the incredible momentum the economic development team has been driving successfully for Miami-Dade."

"I am not here to replace my friend Mike, no one will ever be able to replace him. We plan to continue to lead what he successfully established - a strong team at The Beacon Council with a proven track record for success," said William D. Talbert III, Interim President and CEO, Miami- Dade Beacon Council and former President and CEO of the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau. "I know what it takes to promote the Greater Miami brand worldwide and will make sure that, along with our private and public sector leaders and community partners, we continue to collaborate effectively and support The Beacon Council's efforts to elevate Miami on the global business stage."

The Search Committee is a diverse group of community leaders representative of Miami-Dade's business community. The nationwide search for a new President and CEO can take anywhere from 6 to 12 months, from the selection of an executive search firm to the appointment of a new President and CEO.

The 2022 President and CEO Search Committee members are:

Yolanda Cash Jackson, Becker; Search Committee Chair FY 21-22 Chair-Elect, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

George Bermudez, Bank of America FY 21-22 Chair, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

Xavier Gonzalez, Cyxtera Technologies FY 21-22 Secretary, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

Gary Goldfarb, Interport Logistics Immediate Past Chair, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

Jaret Davis, Greenberg Traurig FY 16-17 Past Chair, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

Donna Abood, Avison Young FY 14-15 Past Chair, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

Sheldon Anderson, Grove Bank & Trust FY 13-14 Past Chair, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

Alexandra Villoch, Baptist Health South Florida FY 09-10 Past Chair, Miami-Dade Beacon Council "This committee plays a vital role in the search for the high-caliber, experienced economic development professional we need to lead this organization," said Yolanda Cash Jackson, Esq., Search Committee Chair, FY21-22 Chair-Elect for The Beacon Council, and Shareholder at Becker. "We are looking for a visionary leader who champions collaboration, understands how to drive long-term, inclusive prosperity, and is committed to this community. Miami is a top business market globally, at the forefront of innovation and diverse talent - we want to make sure this person not only embraces all our strengths but understands how to continue to propel us forward."

About the Miami Dade Beacon Council

The Miami-Dade Beacon Council is the county's official economic development partnership. Attracting and retaining companies that create high-value jobs and invest in our community, The Beacon Council is committed to driving long-term economic prosperity and inclusive growth for Miami-Dade County, its businesses, and residents. We achieve this by marketing Miami-Dade as a world-class business destination; growing local companies and fostering entrepreneurs; and shaping Miami-Dade's economic future. Established in 1985, The Beacon Council has attracted more than 120,000 new jobs and $7 Billion of new investment to Miami-Dade County. For more information, visit