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Visit St. Paul President Karolyn Kirchgesler to leave for San Jose job

She’s been in St. Paul since 2004 and led the city’s convention bureau through the Republican National Convention and other big events.

Karolyn Kirchgesler, the president of Visit St. Paul, the city’s visitor and convention bureau, is leaving to run San Jose’s convention center and performing arts theaters.

She’ll be president and CEO of Team San Jose. That means, in addition to running the Convention & Visitors Bureau, her group will manage the San Jose Convention Center and Arts and Entertainment venues, including the California Theatre, the Center for the Performing Arts, Montgomery Theater, Parkside Hall, San Jose Civic and South Hall.

Kirchgesler, head of St. Paul’s bureau since 2004, led a merger of the former St. Paul Convention and Visitors Bureau and RiverCentre Convention and Visitors Authority.

In a statement, Kirchgesler said:

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“Saint Paul has been an amazing destination to lead and I am very proud of our many accomplishments over the years. I’ve had the good fortune to work with a tremendous and supportive board, as well as a very talented staff.”

Patricia Mitchell, board chair of Visit St. Paul, said: “We are very sorry to see her go, but we wish her the absolute best as we continue to build on her many accomplishments.”

Kirchgesler will start the new job next month.