Paul Smith has been selected as the next Finley Stadium executive director, Stadium Corporation Chairman of the Board Bryan Patten announced today. Smith, currently the general manager of the Chattanooga Market, will take over when current Finley Stadium Executive Director Merrill Eckstein retires at the end of the calendar year.
“Paul Smith is a family man who will bring family fun to Finley Stadium in many forms, just as he has done for the past six years with the Chattanooga Market,” Patten said. “The board is absolutely delighted to have him accept the position of executive director of Finley Stadium, succeeding Merrill Eckstein, who has guided the Finley Stadium Complex very successfully for the past five years.”
Smith will oversee all operations on the Finley Campus, including the First Tennessee Pavilion, Stadium Club and the stadium itself, working with current users like the UTC athletics department, Chattanooga FC, the Chattanooga Market and all other events and activities staged on the Finley Campus.
“Merrill has done a tremendous job getting Finley on firm footing,”Smith said. “I have been charged by the Stadium Corporation to take it to the next level. My plan is to develop the Finley Complex into what Gordon Davenport, Max Finley and all the others who so generously supported the stadium, believed it could be.”
“I have always been a Mocs fan and I look forward to helping improve the visitor experience for football and all the events we host at the Finley Complex,” said Smith, a UTC graduate. "I am excited at being given the opportunity to continue to build Finley Stadium and the First Tennessee Pavilion into a top-notch event location.”
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