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Managing Director, Marketing and Communications

Irene Alvarez

Marketing and Communications

Role and Responsibilities

As managing director, marketing and communications, Irene’s daily mission is to identify the most effective ways to let audiences around the world know what makes the Columbus Region a unique and ideal business location. She leads strategy development, management and execution of all Columbus 2020 marketing, communications and media relations programs.

Under Irene’s leadership, Columbus 2020 has won dozens of national and international recognitions for its marketing and advertising programs, including brand development projects, websites, print materials and integrated communications campaigns.

She has honed her community marketing expertise by spending over a decade working in tourism, advertising, and economic development. Her advertising client portfolio encompassed civic organizations, CVBs and EDOs, and she helped lead the development of the Columbus brand and the One of US campaign that has been adopted by dozens of organizations throughout the Columbus Region.

Irene provides media relations consulting and assistance Columbus 2020 clients and communities when it comes time to announce expansions, and she is a frequent speaker on the topic of community marketing and brand development.

Awards and Recognition

  • People to Know in Media and Marketing, Columbus Business First, 2016
  • Forty Under 40, Columbus Business First, 2015
  • Mid-America Economic Development Council Marketing Awards, 2015, 2016
  • International Economic Development Council Excellence in Economic Development, various marketing awards in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016
  • OEDA Excellence in Economic Development Marketing, 2012, 2016

Past Experience and Education


  • Account Supervisor, Fahlgren Mortine
  • Marketing Project Manager, Experience Columbus


  • Bachelor of Science in communication, Ohio University

Board and Community Involvement

  • Columbus Brand Marketing Committee
  • Columbus Arts Marketing Committee
  • Board of Directors, External Affairs Committee and Executive Committee, CASA of Franklin County
  • Volunteer Counselor, Camp Sunrise


Why do you live in the Columbus Region?

There’s a welcoming spirit and an undercurrent of creative energy.

Why do you work in economic development?

It’s a privilege to do work every day that betters my community.