Destinations International Hall of Fame

Pioneers. Champions. Influencers. Industry leaders. These are the men and women who have advanced and improved the destination industry through their leadership, innovation and creativity. 

Launched in 2014, the Hall of Fame Award was created to recognize individuals who have changed the future of the destination industry for the better. It is the highest honor that Destinations International can bestow.

Our goal is to shine a spotlight on these pioneers, champions and influencers, and allow our members around the globe an opportunity to get to know them and their work. The selection process is based on how each inductee shaped or influenced the destination marketing and management industry, created positive change, and how their contributions created long lasting impact on travel promotion today.

This prestigious award provides a historical narrative of the leaders who have helped grow and nurture the destination marketing industry through the years.

2019 Destinations International Hall of Fame Inductees:

  • Cole Carley, Former President & CEO of Fargo, Moorhead CVB (Retired)
  • Kathleen (Kitty) Ratcliffe, President of Explore St. Louis
  • Shelley Johnson, CDME, LCTP, Executive Director/CEO of Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana CVB (Retired)
  • W. Bill Williams, Former VP of Diversity Sales at Choose Chicago (Retired)

2018 Destinations International Hall of Fame Inductees:

  • Anja Loetscher, Retired; Former Director, Geneva Tourism & Conventions Foundation
  • Marian Holt McLain, Retired; Former President & CEO, San Jose CVB
  • William (Bill) Peeper, Retired; Former President & CEO, Orlando CVB
  • Deborah Sexton, Former President & CEO, PCMA

2017 Destinations International Hall of Fame Inductees:

  • Charles Ahlers, Former President, Anaheim/Orange Co. Visitor & Convention Bureau
  • Rick Antonson, Former President & CEO, Tourism Vancouver
  • Robert Cumings, President, Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Charles Gillett*, Former President & CEO, New York Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • John Marks, Former President & CEO, San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Tom Muldoon, Former President, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Dave Radcliffe, Former President & CEO, Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Spurgeon Richardson, Former President & CEO, Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Charlotte St. Martin, Former Executive Vice President of Operations and Marketing of Loews Hotel
  • Chester “Chet” Wilkins*, CEO, Houston Convention & Visitors Bureau

2016 Destinations International Hall of Fame Inductees:

  • Ray Bloom, Chairman and Founder, IMEX Group
  • Brad Burlingame, President & CEO, Visit West Hollywood
  • Nicki Grossman, President, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Gary Sain, President & CEO, Visit Orlando

2015 Destinations International Hall of Fame Inductees:

  • Don Anderson, Executive Partner/Founder, Destination Consultancy Group (1996-Present)
  • George Fenich, Ph.D., Professor of Meetings/Events/Conventions, School of Hospitality Leadership, East Carolina University (2007– Present)
  • Bobbie Patterson, Executive Director, Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau (1982-2013)
  • William F. Snyder, President, Anaheim/Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau (1973-1992)
  • Edward J. McNeill, President, New Orleans Metropolitan CVB

2014 Destinations International Hall of Fame Inductees

  • Milton J. Carmichael, President/CEO/Founder, Detroit Convention and Tourists' Bureau
  • Peggy Flower, Former Executive Director of Convention Sales, Greater Omaha Convention and Visitors Bureau (1983 - 1989)
  • Rossi Ralenkotter, President/CEO, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (2004 - Present)
  • Leonard E. Rolston, Former President, Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau (1977 - 1987)
  • George D. Kirkland, CAE, Former President, Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau (1990 - 2001)
  • Gary Grimmer, CEO, Gaining Edge (2004 - Present)