Neil Paul is executive director of Visit Anderson/Anderson County CVB. As a 2018 Connect Sports Game Changer, he discusses his passion for sports tourism.
What I Do: In addition to the day-to-day operations of managing the CVB, I am responsible for marketing and promoting Anderson County and Lake Hartwell for the benefit of tourism and generating a positive economic impact on our community located in the Blue Ridge Mountains between Charlotte and Atlanta.
How I Got here: I arrived in Anderson as the sales manager for the CVB in 2010 following a brief stint in parks and recreation and coaching basketball at the collegiate level. I was elevated to interim director in 2015 and held on for 17 months before being named executive director.
Why I Am a Game Changer: In collaboration with Visit Greenville SC, we hosted the 2018 Geico Bassmaster Classic presented by Dick’s Sporting Goods, the most attended Classic in the 48-year history of the event. With an attendance of over 143,000 and an economic impact of more than $24 million to the upstate of South Carolina, the 2018 event was arguably the most successful Bassmaster Classic of all time. In 2015, we drew the third-highest Classic attendance ever on a year in which we hosted the coldest Classic of all time.