Vince Gill will receive one of the hospitality industry’s top awards for contributions to the success of the tourism and convention business in Nashville. The Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp announced today that Gill is the third recipient of the E.W. “Bud” Wendell Award, joining former Gov. Phil Bredesen and former Mayor Karl Dean.
“Whether he is playing guitar for All for the Hall, advocating for the Women’s Final Four or serving as Mayor of Smashville during the NHL All-Star Game, Vince Gill has contributed mightily to who we are as Music City,” said Ken Levitan, board chair of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp and co-president of Vector Management. “There is no better ambassador to represent the diversity of music that is thriving in Music City than a musician who can go from traditional country to bluegrass to western swing to gospel to just about any kind of musical style with the ease that Vince does. Most of all, Vince embodies the kind of warmth that makes Nashville the friendliest city in the world, and Music City would not be who we are today without his numerous contributions.”
Gill will be presented the E.W. “Bud” Wendell Award at Nashville’s National Tourism Week Hospitality Industry Celebration, which will take place on May 3 at 11:30 a.m. at the Karl F. Dean Grand Ballroom at the Music City Center. Nashville Mayor Megan Barry will offer the keynote address. Registration to attend the luncheon is still open.
The E.W. “Bud” Wendell Award honors the work of a Nashville business executive who helped make Nashville into the music entertainment center it is today. Wendell began his career with the National Life and Accident Insurance Company (then the parent company of WSM and the Grand Ole Opry). He was named manager of the Grand Ole Opry in 1968 and was ultimately named president and CEO of Gaylord Entertainment in 1991. He expanded the Opryland Hotel into Nashville’s largest convention facility, and he oversaw Gaylord’s renovation of the Ryman Auditorium and the opening of the Wildhorse Saloon dance club, which helped revive a declining downtown Nashville. Wendell is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame.
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