When it comes to events at the Albuquerque Convention Center, José García is usually behind them.
As the general manager, the New Mexico native is constantly looking for ways to get visitors to the Convention Center.
With the pandemic putting a halt to most events in 2020, García and his crew never stopped working. Things are looking up now that events are occurring.
“The Convention Center is about 60% or 70% of 2019,” he says. “It’s a lot of work for us here. I can tell you that our clients have been extremely pleased.”
García works for ASM Global, the management company for the Albuquerque Convention Center.
His team not only oversees the center, but it also took over the day-to-day activities at Civic Plaza.
Most recently, his team got the contract to oversee the Jennifer Riordan Spark Kindness Sports Complex, 1801 Arroyo Vista NW.
“They asked us to submit a proposal to manage it,” he says. “It’s a beautiful baseball complex on the West Side. During this summer, we were full of baseball and softball tournaments. We also intermix baseball practices out there. It’s definitely a jewel in the crown of Albuquerque.”
The New Mexico native has been at the Convention Center for just under 18 years – the past eight as general manager.
He started as an event coordinator before working his way up.
“I love doing events for the community,” he says. “Having the community be able to attend some of the Convention Center, Civic Plaza or the baseball events makes a difference. It brings us together.”
García is looking forward to bringing back Albuquerque’s Kids Rock Fest, Earth Day Festival and Movies on the Plaza next year.
Meanwhile, he’s focusing on concerts and events for the fall and winter at the Convention Center.
García says the film industry has used the space for many years.
“We have Netflix for the next six months as they get ready to shoot ‘Chupa,’ ” he says. “We love ‘Better Call Saul’ filming here as well. I think the film industry has a tremendous positive impact on the city. In turn, that helps everyone else.”
García says the center’s mission is meetings and conventions, and those will be back soon.
In the meantime, other events are keeping his team busy.
“Come January, we’re looking forward to the indoor track season,” he says. “I’m told the track is fast.”
Editor’s note: Venue Plus continues “In Case You Didn’t Know,” a weekly feature with fun tidbits about New Mexicans and their projects.