Reece has been instrumental in a push to overhaul the way the tourism authority operates, a role that has thrust him into a controversial position over the past year. He has been the leading critic of how the tourism authority spends more than $600,000 collected through a room tax.
Reece, manager of a Quality Inn in Maggie Valley, has been a long-time leader in the Maggie Valley Visitors Bureau, formerly the chamber of commerce. Reece also has been active in shaping Maggie Valley town politics and elections for several years. He has led numerous tourism efforts in Maggie Valley, from the acquisition of the town festival grounds to creating new events to help brand Maggie Valley, and trying to find a buyer to re-open Ghost Town.
Reece’s prognosis is not known, but any recovery likely will be slow and it is unclear when he will be able to resume his role as a leader in Maggie Valley political and tourism circles.
— By Becky Johnson