U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced the appointment of 32 members to the Travel and Tourism Advisory Board (Board). The Board, established in 2003, serves as the advisory body to the Secretary of Commerce on matters relating to the travel and tourism industry in the United States. Its members represent a broad cross-section of the industry, including transportation services, financial services, and hotels and restaurants, as well as a mix of other small and large firms from across the country.
“The Commerce Department is committed to expanding U.S. exports in the travel and tourism sector, which supports millions of jobs and is a major contributor to our economic recovery,” said Secretary Pritzker. “The Travel and Tourism Advisory Board is a critical public-private partnership that helps drive growth in the travel and tourism industry. I look forward to working with the new Board members to continue our efforts of making America a more attractive and accessible destination.”
The Board provides advice that helps the government prioritize the travel and tourism policies that will contribute to growth, including enhanced visa issuance and travel facilitation, increased investment in transportation infrastructure, and research for decision-making. Government agencies that are part of the Tourism Policy Council, including the Departments of State, Homeland Security, Transportation, Interior, and others, have considered the Board’s advice as they have worked to make progress on these issues. The Board also provided input into the National Travel and Tourism Strategy, and its continued efforts will play an important role in reaching the Strategy’s goal of attracting 100 million international visitors to the United States by 2021.
Last month, the Commerce Department released new data showing that spending by international visitors in 2013 totaled more than $180.7 billion, up nearly $1.3 billion per month from 2012. The travel and tourism industry now accounts for 26 percent of all American services exports, and nearly eight percent of overall exports.
The newly appointed members of the Travel and Tourism Advisory Board are:
1. *Chair, Sam Gilliland, Chairman Emeritus, Sabre, Southlake, Texas
2. *Vice-Chair, Kathleen Matthews, Executive Vice President & Chief Global Communications & Public Affairs Officer, Marriott International, Inc., Bethesda, Md.
3. *Holly Agra, Owner and Chief Executive Officer, Chicago’s First Lady Cruises, Chicago, Ill.
4. *Rosemarie Andolino, Commissioner, Chicago Department of Aviation, Chicago, Ill.
5. *Maureen Bausch, Executive Vice President of Business Development, Mall of America, Bloomington, Minn.
6. David Berg, Senior Vice President, General Counsel & Corporate Secretary, Airlines for America, Washington D.C.
7. Darrell Bryan, President and CEO, Clipper Navigation, Seattle, Wash.
8. Henry Cruz, Senior Partner, The CrossBrook Organization, LLC, Alexandria, Va.
9. *Todd Davidson, Chief Executive Officer, Travel Oregon, Salem, Ore.
10. Brad Dean, President and CEO, Myrtle Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau / Chamber of Commerce, Myrtle Beach, S.C.
11. Fred Dixon, Chief Executive Officer, NYC & Company, New York City, N.Y.
12. *Maryann Ferenc, Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer, Mise en Place, Inc., Tampa Bay, Fla.
13. *Elliott Ferguson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Destination DC, Washington, D.C.
14. Don Freeman, Chairman, Freeman Decorating Co., Houston, Texas
15. James Hagen, Secretary, South Dakota Department of Tourism, Pierre, S.D.
16. Barney Harford, Chief Executive Officer, Orbitz Worldwide, Chicago, Ill.
17. Mike Gallagher, Co-Chairman and Co-Founder, CityPASS, Victor, Idaho
18. *Kirk Hoessle, President and Chief Executive Officer, Alaska Wildland Adventures, Girdwood, Alaska
19. Jeremy Jacobs, Jr., Principal, Delaware North Companies, Buffalo, N.Y.
20. *Robert Lynch, President, Americans for the Arts, Washington, D.C.
21. Michael McCormick, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer, Global Business Travel Association, Alexandria, Va.
22. Margaret McKeough, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, Washington, D.C.
23. *Brian Mullis, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Sustainable Travel International, White Salmon, Wash.
24. *Rossi Ralenkotter, President and Chief Executive Officer, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, Las Vegas, Nev.
25. *Olga Ramudo, President and Chief Executive Officer, Express Travel of Miami, Inc., Miami, Fla.
26. *Trudy Rautio, President and Chief Executive Officer, Carlson, Minnetonka, Minn.
27. Dean Runyan, President, Dean Runyan Associates, Portland, Ore.
28. *Sherry Rupert, President, American Indian Alaska Tourism Association, Albuquerque, N.M.
29. *John Sprouls, Chief Executive Officer, Universal Orlando Resort and Executive Vice President, Universal Parks and Resorts, Orlando, Fla.
30. *Greg Stubblefield, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, Enterprise Holdings, St. Louis, Mo.
31. *Carol Wallace, President and Chief Executive Officer, San Diego Convention Center Corporation, San Diego, Calif.
32. *Jonathan Zuk, President, Amadeo Travel Solutions, Verona, N.J.
*Denotes reappointed Travel and Tourism Advisory Board member.
The full list of members and other information about the Board is available at http://www.trade.gov/ttab.