Georgia Aquarium Appoints New Leader

ATLANTA (AP) - The world's largest fish tank has named a new leader.

The Georgia Aquarium's board of directors has appointed interim CEO Mike Leven the permanent head of the downtown Atlanta attraction. He replaces Jeffery Swanagan, who left to be executive director of the Columbus Zoo this summer.

Leven was most recently the vice chairman of the aquarium and the chief operating officer of the Marcus Foundation, which was started by Aquarium founder Bernie Marcus. Marcus co-founded the Atlanta-based Home Depot chain.

Leven has also been president and CEO of US Franchise Systems Inc., which franchises Microtel Inns & Suites and Hawthorn Suites. Before that, he was president of Holiday Inn Worldwide and head of Days Inn of America.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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