Virginian to lead Visit Buffalo Niagara - The Buffalo News

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Virginian to lead Visit Buffalo Niagara

The head of the tourism promotion agency in Loudoun County, Va., will be introduced as the new leader of Visit Buffalo Niagara today, a tourism industry source said.

Patrick Kaler, president and chief executive officer of Visit Loudoun, will become the president and CEO of the organization responsible for attracting visitors to Erie County.

Visit Buffalo Niagara, formerly the Buffalo Niagara Convention & Visitors Bureau, has called a news conference for 10:30 a.m. in the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center.

Kaler began working as the head of Visit Loudoun, which is in the Washington, D.C. metro area and one of the richest counties in the country, in March 2011, according to

Prior to that, Kaler worked for LA Inc., which is the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau, as well as the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority/Tahoe-Douglas Visitors Authority/Lake Tahoe Gaming Alliance, according to his LinkedIn profile.

He also has worked for the Galena/Jo Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau, in Illinois, as well as the Champaign-Urbana Convention & Visitors Bureau, according to a February 2011 article on

Kaler fills the vacancy created when Dottie Gallagher-Cohen left in June to become president of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership.

The hiring follows a national search for a replacement.

Kaler will be introduced at a morning event that will include County Executive Mark Poloncarz; Dennis Murphy, chairman of the board of Visit Buffalo Niagara; and Jon Dandes, chairman of the Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission.

A spokesman for Visit Buffalo Niagara declined to comment Tuesday evening.


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