The University of New Orleans International Alumni Association announced that Mark C. Romig has been selected as the 2016 University of New Orleans Homer L. Hitt Distinguished Alumni honoree. The alumni association will present Romig with its highest honor at the Distinguished Alumni Gala, which will be held at the National WWII Museum’s United States Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center on Thursday, Nov. 3, from 7-10 p.m. The event will also celebrate the investiture of the University’s seventh leader, President John W. Nicklow, who will be formally installed during an on-campus ceremony on Nov. 2.
As president and CEO of the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation (NOTMC), Romig has distinguished himself as an influential leader in the city’s tourism industry. He is also the stadium announcer for the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
“I credit my alma mater for helping shape the person I have become,” said Romig, who earned a bachelor’s degree in hotel, restaurant and tourism administration from UNO in 1978. “I have always believed that service to my community is of utmost importance and our responsibility as citizens, and I learned that by watching the example the University of New Orleans has exhibited through the years.”
His past volunteer service is also exemplary. From serving as the board leader for the Sugar Bowl Committee, Idea Village, Project Lazarus, Xavier University, Fontainebleau Improvement Association and Southern Repertory Theatre, Romig has made an impact on both the hospitality industry and the quality of life in his hometown. He coordinated the city’s participation in the Bicentennial of the War of 1812, which included the 2012 NOLA Navy Week as well as the 2015 NOLA Navy Week. He also served on the Battle of New Orleans Bicentennial Commission and the Host Committee for Super Bowl XLVII. He has also been president of Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) International Fraternity.
Romig currently serves on the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s Tourism and Travel Advisory Council as well as the boards for the Fore!Kids Foundation, Emeril Lagasse Foundation, Audubon Nature Institute, Volunteers Network, Covenant House of New Orleans and Fidelity Bank.
Romig was previously the vice president of marketing and public relations for HCA Inc.- Delta Division and, prior to that, he spent sixteen years at Peter A. Mayer Advertising and was president of the public relations division. He also served as vice president of public affairs for Hibernia National Bank and was director of protocol and guest relations for the 1984 World’s Fair. He was on the staff of the U.S. Department of Transportation as well as the Bob Dole for President Committee.
“Mark Romig epitomizes what a metropolitan public university is all about with his deep sense of responsibility to building a vibrant community,” said Barbara Johnson, chair of the Distinguished Alumni Gala. “As a major industry player, positioning New Orleans as a world-class destination and economic driver, to his civic leadership in education, entrepreneurship and neighborhoods, Mark has distinguished himself as a selfless champion of striving for the very best we can be together as community.”
Romig is the 33rd honoree to receive the Homer L. Hitt Distinguished Alumnus award. Previous recipients include engineer and executive Roy Glapion, Sheriff Newell Normand, television news executive Kim Bondy, Gambit Communications Chairman Clancy DuBos and former Lieutenant Governor Melinda Schwegmann. The honoree is selected by a committee of former award recipients. The Distinguished Alumni gala will also recognize a distinguished alumnus from each of University’s colleges.
The 2016 Distinguished Alumni Gala is the culmination of a weeklong schedule of events entitled “Making History: A Celebration of University of New Orleans Leadership,” which will include a public lecture and the investiture ceremony of UNO President John W. Nicklow.
The gala will be a major civic event to strengthen community engagement and pride in UNO, and prominently celebrate the University’s important contributions to the city and region. The gala’s venue is a testament to UNO’s lasting impact on the community—the National WWII Museum was conceived in UNO’s history department by professors Stephen Ambrose and Nick Mueller, who currently serves as the museum’s president and CEO.
Proceeds from the Distinguished Alumni Gala will increase critically needed funding for student scholarships and support the UNO Alumni Association’s programming to ensure student success and alumni engagement.
For information about tickets and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.gala.uno.edu.