Executive Director C. Roger Hibbard has retired after 33 wonderful years at Blue Ridge. We will be honoring Roger’s time on the mountain with a reception and dinner in March. (More details to be announced later).
Until then we’d like to congratulate Kurt Eckel (our Operations Director since 1997) who officially took over the reigns on January 1st!
Here is a recent press release announcing the change in leadership:
Paul V. Breazeale, President of the YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly Board of Directors, is pleased to announce that Kurt L. Eckel, Operations Director of the Assembly, has been named Chief Executive Officer effective with the retirement of C. Roger Hibbard, December 31, 2009.
Prior to Blue Ridge, he worked in the Asheville area’s hospitality and tourism industry for 15 years. With various hotels, Kurt has been a director of sales, food and beverage director and general manager with multi-property responsibilities. In addition, Kurt was an adjunct instructor at Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College, Asheville, North Carolina.
Kurt is a member of Paynes Chapel, a classic western North Carolina country church, in Sandy Mush, North Carolina. Kurt’s professional involvement includes membership in the Association of YMCA Professionals and the Western North Carolina Conference Center Association, serving as president in 2007. His other offices have included vice-president of the Asheville Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, chairman of the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority, and a member of the board of directors of the Black Mountain-Swannanoa Valley and Asheville Area Chambers of Commerce.
Kurt, a graduate of Stetson University (Deland, FL) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration, is a YMCA Senior Director and has completed the YMCA’s Executive Development Program. He served as operations director at Blue Ridge from 1997-2009.
Kurt and his wife, Peggy, will celebrate eight years of marriage this year. Their family includes sons Ben and Adam, daughters Ashley and husband Travis, Reba and husband Ian, and four grandchildren. Kurt and Peggy reside at YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly.