Biweekly Newsletter: October 11, 2019

Dear David,

Greetings and happy Friday.

This is an exciting time for our team as we are fully engaged in our fall summit schedule. These summits provide us with the opportunity to share some of our latest work, but more importantly, they offer our members and partners the chance to network and learn from each other.

To kick things off, we started in Kansas City, MO for our Visitor Services Summit, which had a record attendance of 145 attendees. Special thanks to Jason Fulvi, President and CEO of Visit KC, and his team for hosting us in their destination. We would also like to thank the Visitors Services Planning Committee for their hard work in helping plan this summit. These volunteers include:

  • Judith Durant, CDME, CGSP, CVA, The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel
  • Bill Krause, Visit Salt Lake
  • Susan Pass, CTA, TMP, Louisville Tourism
  • Brenda Carlson, Visit Anchorage
  • Alexis Perrone, Experience Columbus
  • Jill Pope, Visit Cheyenne
  • Michele Hayes, Visit Omaha
  • Jenny Wilson, Visit KC
  • Megan Wright, Visit KC

Our Finance, Operations and Technology Summit wrapped up on Wednesday with 135 in attendance. Thanks to Doug Price, President and CEO of Visit Colorado Springs and his team for hosting us. Again, we would like to thank the summit’s planning committee for their hard work. These volunteers include:

  • Jim Cassidy, Visit Colorado Springs
  • Pholeta Alexander, Atlanta CVB
  • Kelly Campbell, Experience Olympia & Beyond
  • Jennifer Chance, C.P.A, Visit Jackson
  • Leslie Graf, Destinations Cleveland
  • Andrea Hunt, Visit Sarasota County
  • Carl Leonard, Visit KC
  • Kim Machado, Visit Grand Junction
  • David Nguyen, Meet Minneapolis
  • Juliet Velazquez, Greater Miami CVB
  • Vimal Vyas, Greater Raleigh CVB


This week, we announced that the early bird registration rate for Destination Showcase has been extended through October 31. Register today to join the over 50 destinations that have already reserved their spots! You will have the opportunity to connect with the nation’s top event planners in one location and gain insights from educational offerings created by PCMA. This year’s event experience will give destination organizations more opportunities to connect with planners and spend more time with their target audience. You may learn more and register here.


Last week I had the pleasure and honor of attending the first Baton Rouge Annual Tourism Summit. Thanks to Paul Arrigo, President and CEO of Visit Baton Rouge for a successful event. From Louisiana, I headed to Weeki Wachee Springs, FL for the Destinations Florida (formerly FADMO) Annual Meeting. Special thanks to Robert Skrob, CPA, CAE, Executive Director of Destinations Florida for inviting me to speak to their members and stakeholders about the value destination organizations play in the community.


Congratulations to Visit Tri-Cities for receiving their DMAP accreditation. They join more than 200 destination organizations that have distinguished themselves as organizations with quality performance standards for the industry. Also, congratulations to the Fort Worth Convention & Visitors Bureau earning their reaccreditation (with distinction) and to Visit Rochester on achieving their 4-year renewal. You may click here to learn more about becoming DMAP accredited.

We are pleased to share that we have received over 200 applications for our committee and task forces. We look forward to congratulating the new 2020 committee and task force members by the end of November. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact Chelsea Welter at [email protected].


In partnership with DMA West, we were thrilled to offer two Professional in Destination Management (PDM) certificate program courses in conjunction with the organization’s Education Summit in Sacramento last week. Over 20 industry professionals participated in each course and walked away with increased knowledge of governance, finance and sales, as well as an expanded professional network. We are grateful to Melyssa Laughlin of Visit Vacaville for working with our team to bring this in-person learning opportunity to the Education Summit.


Nina Winston just returned from a brief visit to the UK, where she connected with key leaders and partners to strategize for the year ahead. A special thank you to Carina Bauer, Ray Bloom and their team at IMEX Group, Barbara Jamison and her team at London & Partners, David Goodger from Tourism Economics, and Amanda Hills, Jo Hartley and the Hills Balfour team for their time and insights. We are thrilled to continue building on our strong partnership with European Cities Marketing (ECM) and engaging with destinations across the continent to elevate our industry and drive stronger connections.

Dawn Holden had the opportunity to attend Tourism Montreal’s 100th Anniversary Celebration on Wednesday at the historic Le Windsor. Congratulations to Yves Lalumière, President and Chief Executive Officer of Tourism Montreal, for this program celebrating a century of uniting the city's key tourism stakeholders. You may read more here.


We recently heard the news that Darren Rudloff, CEO of Visit Cheyenne, has announced his resignation from the organization effective Dec. 31. We wish Darren the best of luck as he starts his own business to provide strategic planning, research and organizational assistance to tourism organizations. You may learn more here.

We wanted to send another reminder to participate in the Destination Organization Performance Platform. Results are complimentary to members of Destinations International. To learn more about the tool, please join us on a webinar on Tuesday, October 29 at 2 p.m. ET. You may click here to learn more.

I’d like to take the opportunity to provide an update on the Event Impact Calculator (EIC), a product and service of Destinations International that is growing rapidly throughout the world. Thanks to Adam Sacks and his team at Tourism Economics for their great partnership. Right now, we have almost 300 subscribers from 9 countries, including 14 Canadian destinations. To learn more about EIC, you may click here.

Thanks to those of you who provided feedback about this newsletter. We will continue to seek input and work to improve the communications that are important to you.

For those of you attending our Membership Summit on October 21-23, we look forward to seeing you in St. Petersburg/Clearwater, FL.

Best wishes for a safe and enjoyable weekend.

Don Welsh signature

Don Welsh
President & CEO
Destinations International