Two Nashville Leaders Join NCVC Board of Directors

Music Industry Executive Ken Levitan Returns as Board Chair

NASHVILLE – Two Nashville leaders have joined the Board of Directors of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp for Fiscal Year 2024. Max R. Goldberg, co-owner of Strategic Hospitality, joins as a board member, and attorney Molly Shehan joins in the role of legal counsel.

Shehan is a partner at the Music Row law firm Milom Horsnell Crow Kelley Beckett Shehan PLC (MHCKBS). Goldberg’s Strategic Hospitality is the company responsible for dynamic destinations across Nashville, including Merchants, The Patterson House, The Catbird Seat, The Band Box and The Country Club located in First Horizon Park, Bastion, Henrietta Red, Locust, Tacos by Alebrije in GEODIS Park, and recently opened Kisser. Shehan previously served on the Board of Directors of Music City Inc., the foundation of the NCVC.

Respected music industry executive Ken Levitan, who is Founder and Co-President of Vector Management, will return as the Chairman of the Board of Directors. He previously served two consecutive terms as board chair in fiscal years 2015 and 2016. The NCVC Board represents sectors from within and outside the hospitality industry to guide the organization during continued growth in both visitation and hotel supply.

“Max and Molly bring a deep understanding of the hospitality and entertainment sectors as they join a fantastic group of community and business leaders with expertise in hospitality, finance, health, sports and more. Their guidance will be instrumental as Nashville tourism continues its upward trajectory,” Levitan said. “The powerhouse hospitality industry is driving the economy of Nashville, and we are eager to work together with the city’s incoming administration to harness the momentum that generates growth for community members and local businesses and revenue for the city and state.”

Additionally, NCVC President and CEO Deana Ivey has expanded the NCVC senior leadership team with the addition of Heather Middleton, Chief Marketing Officer; David Spencer, Senior Vice President, Events; and Bonna Johnson, Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications. The leadership team also includes Jeff Mefford, CFO; Adrienne Siemers, Chief Sales Officer; Andrea Arnold, Chief Public Affairs Officer; and Marie Sueing, Chief Diversity Officer.

Nashville’s hospitality industry generated record economic activity for the city in 2022 with $9.2 billion in direct visitor spending and unprecedented hotel performance: the most room nights ever sold in a single year at 9.5 million room nights. Also, October 2022 was a record month in hotel tax collections at $12.86 million, breaking the record set in June 2022 at $12.17 million. The industry represents more than 70,000 jobs in Davidson County.

Nashville is ranked the second-best convention destination in the country (Cvent) and has been named a top destination to visit worldwide for the last 12 years. Major events continue to help drive demand in Music City with strong summer performances from CMA Fest, Let Freedom Sing! July 4th in Music City, NHL Draft and Awards and SEC Kickoff Media Days, along with the upcoming Music City Grand Prix and Jack Daniel’s New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash, which will be a five-hour special on CBS again.

The NCVC Executive Committee for Fiscal Year 2024 includes Levitan as Chairman; Maneet Chauhan, Executive Chef and Partner at Morph Hospitality, as Chair-Elect; Kevin Lavender, Executive Vice President and Head of Corporate Banking at Fifth Third Bank, as Immediate Past Chair; Marcus Whitney, Founder and Managing Partner, Jumpstart Nova, as Finance and Audit Committee Chair; Ellen Pryor, Frist Art Museum’s Director of Communications, as Sales and Marketing Committee Chair; and Deana Ivey, President and CEO, Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp.

The NCVC Board of Directors also includes:

  • John Esposito, Chairman and CEO, Warner Music Group
  • Dr. Robert Fisher, Past President, Belmont University
  • Eddie George, Head Football Coach, Tennessee State University
  • Kevin Green, COO, Chartwell Hospitality
  • Dr. Alex Jahangir, Vice President of Business Development, Vanderbilt Medical Center
  • Doug Kreulen, President and CEO, Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority
  • Pat Martin, Founder and Chairman, Martin Investment Group
  • Burke Nihill, President and CEO, Tennessee Titans
  • Howie Nuchow, Co-Head, CAA Sports
  • Marc Sternagel, Area General Manager, Grand Hyatt
  • Claire Tucker, Independent Director, Ford Credit Bank
  • Ben Weprin, CEO, AJ Capital

Ex officio members include Sherry Franklin, Director of Hotel Sales, Renaissance Nashville and Chair, Metro Tourism and Convention Commission; Sarah Trahern CEO, Country Music Association; and Shehan as legal counsel. The 22-member volunteer board includes community and business leaders who represent diverse voices in the Nashville area. The board is charged with directing the organization’s work on behalf of the city, the members of the NCVC and the city’s vibrant hospitality industry.

The NCVC also announced one new member to the Board of Directors for its foundation, Music City Inc. Alberto R. Gonzales, who served as Attorney General of the United States during the George W. Bush administration, was a member of the NCVC Board of Directors for the past year as legal counsel.


Max R. Goldberg

Max Goldberg is co-owner of Strategic Hospitality, the company that includes Merchants, The

Patterson House, The Catbird Seat, The Band Box and The Country Club located in First Horizon Park, Bastion, Henrietta Red, Locust, Tacos by Alebrije in GEODIS Park, and recently opened Kisser. Strategic Hospitality was created in 2006 as a modest company of two and has grown to a thriving hospitality group employing over 500 people across each of its venues.

Max attended the University of Denver, graduating with honors and double majoring in Business Management and Economics. In 2007, he recognized his true passion in the hospitality business and moved back to his hometown to partner with his brother Benjamin. Max is active in the Nashville community and on the boards of Oz Arts Nashville and the Community Foundation. He is a member of the Young Presidents Organization, Entrepreneurs Organization, Urban Land Institute, a 2016 graduate from Leadership Nashville, and a member of the 2019 class of Henry Crown Fellows within the Aspen Global Leadership Network at the Aspen Institute.

Max was recognized as one of Forbes 30 Under 30 in 2013, Nashville Business Journal 40 Under 40 in 2016, and Nashville Business Journal Power 100 in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2020, and 2023. The Goldberg brothers’ nomination for 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019, and 2020 James Beard Foundation Awards for Outstanding Restaurateur attests to their entrepreneurial drive, innovative ideas, and focus on exceptional customer service within each of their establishments. Furthering Strategic Hospitality’s reputation as leaders in hospitality, Julia Sullivan, chef and co-owner of Henrietta Red, was honored as a finalist for Best Chef: Southeast by the James Beard Foundation in 2020, as well as Josh Habiger, chef and co-owner of Bastion, in 2023.

Molly Shehan

Molly Shehan is a partner at the law firm Milom Horsnell Crow Kelley Beckett Shehan PLC. Molly concentrates her practice in the areas of entertainment and intellectual property law. Molly’s practice primarily consists of the representation of artists, songwriters, producers, creative entrepreneurs, corporate entities, as well as non-profit and membership-based corporations.

Molly is a graduate of Belmont College of Law and received her BBA in Music Business from Belmont University. Before joining MCKBS as an attorney, her experience included interning for the Nashville Music Council for two years, interning for Congressman Jim Cooper in Washington D.C., and working as a research assistant for Dr. Don Cusic at Belmont University. Molly was the Copyright Society of the South scholarship recipient and received the John Williams Heart of Belmont Award for her community involvement while at Belmont.

In addition to practicing law, Molly is active in the music industry and the Nashville community. Molly is a board member of Music City, Inc., the Belmont College of Law Advisory Board, and the Belmont CURB College Advisory Board. Molly serves on the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s Troubadour Advisory Council and is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association’s Entertainment & Sports Law Section Executive Committee. Molly has Co-Chaired the Nashville Bar Association’s Entertainment, Sports & Media Law Committee and Chaired the Tennessee Bar Association’s Entertainment and Sports Law Section. Additionally, Molly serves as legal counsel for the Country Music Foundation and Americana Music Association. Molly is a voting member of the Academy of Country Music (ACM), Country Music Association (CMA), and a participant in CMA’s 2023 Woman’s Leadership Academy.

The Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp

The mission of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp is to maximize the economic contribution of the convention and tourism industry to the community by developing and marketing Nashville as a premier destination. Visit the NCVC’s website at and follow us on social media: