Jim Dailey, the former Little Rock mayor who’s worked recently in the commercial real estate business for Flake and Kelley, has been named the next head of the state Tourism Division, succeeding Joe Rice when he retires Dec. 31.

Dailey,  75, a city director for 20 years, was mayor from 1993 to 2006. CORRECTION: I originally wrote he was 65.


Parks and Tourism Director Kane Webb, in announcing the pick in a news release distributed last night,  said:

“Jim Dailey has been a dedicated public servant in The Natural State for most of his adult life and has devoted countless hours and energy to the tourism industry as a member of the Arkansas State Parks, Recreation and Travel Commission. He is a natural fit for this position, and I’m pleased that he has agreed to come on board in this new role. Tourism is one of the state’s leading industries and a major driver of economic development. I am confident that under Jim’s direction, Arkansas Tourism will continue to thrive, innovate and attract visitors from all across the world,” said Webb.

I’d note a convergence unmentioned in the news release. The city’s War Memorial Park Fitness Center was named in Dailey’s honor for his pivotal role in its development (he’s also a frequent user). It sits a field goal distance or two from War Memorial Stadium, now a part of the management responsibilities of Webb’s department.