Mall of America executive Maureen Bausch has been put in charge of organizing the Super Bowl in Minneapolis in 2018.
Bausch will go from running Minnesota's biggest tourist attraction to organizing Minnesota's biggest party after being named chief executive of the Minneapolis Super Bowl Host Committee today, MPR reports.
"I always said: 'The only way I would leave the Mall of America is for the opportunity of a lifetime'," she told the Business Journal. "This is that opportunity."
December 15 will be her last day at the Mall of America, where she has worked since 1990 and has risen to the position of executive vice president of business development.
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Minneapolis won the right to host Super Bowl 52 in May, with the February spectacular being held in the new $1 billion Vikings stadium, which is due to open in 2016.
"Hosting the Super Bowl will give us a unique opportunity to showcase everything great and special about Minnesota for months in advance of the game," Bausch told Vikings.com. "We have an amazingly creative community; harnessing that talent to create something bold is what I’m most excited about.”
The challenge facing Bausch is daunting, as the game in Minneapolis will bring "two weeks of international media attention, millions of dollars of consumer spending, an incalculable civic boost", the Star Tribune says.
Bausch's soon-to-be-former employer featured in the committee's bid in May, with the Mall of America set to be home to "marquee Super Bowl events" in 2018.
Another of the tasks facing Bausch will be coordinating efforts to meet all the NFL requests the city agreed to when bidding to host the games.
They include providing 35,000 free parking spaces, free presidential suites at hotels, access to top golf courses in the summer and fall before the Super Bowl and free police escorts for NFL owners.
But the committee is confident Bausch is up to the task of doing the city proud as it hosts the Super Bowl for the first time since 1992.
"Having told the story of one of the country’s most recognizable brands in Mall of America for more than two decades, Maureen fits the description perfectly," committee member Marilyn Carlson Nelson told Vikings.com.