San Diego Business Journal

The San Diego Convention Center Corporation has announced the 2021 officers of its Board of Directors. Elvin Lai, a San Diego-based hospitality executive and entrepreneur, will serve as board chair.

"My top priority as the incoming Chair is to build and execute a strategic recovery plan,” Lai said. “Knowing the vital role the San Diego Convention Center plays in our region’s economy, I am dedicated to ensuring the sustainability and success of this organization for our community's benefit.”

Lai’s appointment is particularly important as the building prepares to safely reopen since shuttering last year due to COVID-19, said Clifford “Rip” Rippetoe, SDCC’s president and CEO.

“We are encouraged by the interest we continue to hear from meeting planners and attendees about returning to in-person gatherings, and we are prepared to evolve aspects of our operations to meet new guidelines and expectations,” he said. “With our capable and innovative team of staff, board members, and partners, I believe in our ability to rise to challenges and return to our primary role as an economic engine for San Diego.”

Travel & Hospitality reporter Mariel Concepcion can be reached at or 858-634-4625.