(WJET/WFXP/YourErie.com) — Erie County Convention Center Authority Executive Director John “Casey” Wells has announced his pending retirement.

Wells is planning to retire effective January 2023.

According to an announcement from the convention center authority’s board, Wells had been with the authority for more than 40 years. He was involved in several significant development projects, including the Erie Insurance Arena, Warner Theatre, Bayfront Convention Center, UPMC Park, the Sheraton and Marriott Hotels, and the development along Erie’s Bayfront. Those projects total to nearly $300 million.

“Through his tireless efforts, Mr. Wells has significantly increased economic development in Erie, enhanced the quality of life, and has provided our community with first-class convention, sports and entertainment facilities,” Board Chairperson Gwendolyn White wrote in the announcement.

Erie SeaWolves owner and CEO Fernando Aguirre issued a statement on Wells’ retirement.

“On behalf of the Erie SeaWolves organization, I would like to thank Casey Wells for his decades of service to the Erie community, including his tenure as executive director of Erie Events,” Aguirre said. “His commitment to sports and entertainment fans is evident in the first-class facilities we have at UPMC Park and Erie Events’ other best-in-class venues. His impact on the quality of life in Erie is undeniable, and he has been a strong partner to the teams and promoters who collaborate with Erie Events. I wish Casey the best in his retirement and look forward to working with his successor.”

Wells has proposed a potential replacement for his position to the authority board. According to the board announcement, Wells will work with a committee to advise the board on the upcoming leadership transition.