About

Meet the Staff

Tim Jacobson

TIM JACOBSON
Executive Director

Tim Jacobsen served as the Executive Director of the Lake of the Ozarks Convention & Visitor Bureau from June 2005 – December 2020. Tim is a 1980 graduate of Camdenton RIII Schools and was introduced to the hospitality business while still in high school, working at two Lake Area restaurants and a lakefront resort. After attending college in Texas, he returned to the Lake of the Ozarks to work as a Sales Manager at the Lodge of Four Seasons in 1990. In mid 90’s Tim worked for Hyatt Hotels & Resorts where he was promoted from Sales Manager to Associate Director of Sales in Louisville and Dallas. In 2000 Tim was employed as Director of National Accounts at Opryland Hotel & Convention Center in Nashville, TN. In 2002 Tim moved to Florida where he was General Manager of Cabbage Key, an island resort. Later, he became a Director of Sales and Marketing at a Walt Disney World affiliated hotel in Orlando. In 2004, Tim returned home to the Lake of the Ozarks to assume the duties of General Manager at the Inn at Grand Glaize Lakeside Resort & Conference Center. Tim has been very active in the local community and state of Missouri building economic growth through his leadership in positions such as; President of Missouri Association of Convention & Visitor Bureaus, Board Member of Missouri Travel Council, President of the Lake of the Ozarks Regional Economic Development Council, President of the Lake of the Ozarks Bikefest, Co-Chair of the Lake of the Ozarks Air Show, Chair of Lake of the Ozarks Spring & Fall Harbor Hops, Chair of the Lake of the Ozarks Eagle Days and Board Member of the Camden County Local Emergency Planning Committee. Tim is a proud father of his 11-year-old daughter, Jayden, and enjoys their time traveling, fishing, boating, motorcycle riding, and many other outdoor activities.


 

Russ Jester - headshot

RUSS JESTER
Marcom Manager

Russ is originally from the Texarkana, Arkansas area. He has been with the bureau since 2015. Russ is responsible for developing, executing and refining marketing and communications processes that serve an overall mission to increase awareness of Fort Smith as a business and leisure destination. He is the CVB's primary source for a full range of creative services, which has also expanded the catalogue of services available to convention and meeting clients. Since joining the team, some of Russ' achievements have included developing the Experience Fort Smith smartphone app and executing the redesign of FortSmith.org, increasing annual website traffic by more than 150%. Russ holds a B.A. in Journalism, Advertising & Public Relations from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. and he is a member of the Public Relations Society of America, a founding member of the Fort Smith Downtown Business Association, and serves on the board of directors for the Arkansas Festivals & Events Association.


 

Amy Jones - headshot

AMY KNIGHT JONES
Convention & Event Sales Mgr.

Amy was born in Enid, Oklahoma and raised in Broken Arrow. She relocated to the Fort Smith area in 1997 where she raised her three children Lauren, Tanner and Ty.  Amy has worked for Rausch Coleman Homes and attended college at the University of Arkansas Fort Smith, as well as Carl Albert University. While working in the Fort Smith area, she was most comfortable working with the public and fell in love with the downtown area. Before taking her current position in June 2015 she spent 4 years as the Director of Sales for the Courtyard Marriott in Fort Smith. Her expertise was Sales and she found a calling in the Hospitality and Tourism Industry. She is passionate when it comes to representing her city and strives to bring Conventions and Events to Fort Smith. In April of 2016, Amy married Kenny Jones. 


 

Debra Cossey - headshot

DEBRA COSSEY
Executive Secretary

Debra was born in Compton,  California and raised in Bellflower,  California. When she married her husband, Dave, she relocated to Pocola, Oklahoma where she worked for several years at Pocola City Hall. Afterwards, she worked at Tyson Foods in Fort Smith within the Accounting & HR Department for nearly 20 years. Debra and Dave have one son, Court. Luckily, for the Fort Smith Convention & Visitors Bureau, Debra would apply for a position through the City of Fort Smith and become a valuable member of our team. As we like to say, Debra is our "Zookeeper" and keeps everything organized and on track!