100 Years of Advancing Destinations

DMAI Announces 30 Under 30 Program Recipients

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI), along with founding program partner SearchWide, and supporting sponsors IMEX and USAE, has selected the 2014 recipients for its "30 Under 30" program. In its fourth year, this program focuses on identifying and developing the talent of destination marketing professionals, 30 years of age and under, through increased access and exposure to industry networking and thought leadership. A year-round program, the 30 under 30 Class of 2014 will convene for the first time at DMAI’s Annual Convention held July 21-23 in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. Throughout the year, participants will engage in a variety of professional development and volunteer activities for sustained industry engagement.

Michael D. Gehrisch, DMAI's President and CEO, said the program helps spot those up-and-coming individuals that will keep destination marketing on the cutting-edge. "The travel and tourism industry directly employs 101 million people around the world, and it is estimated to generate 24 million new jobs globally by 2023,” he said. “Recruiting and retaining a diverse group of talent will be critical to DMAI’s mission of protecting and advancing the success of destination marketing organizations worldwide.”

There is a pressing concern with travel and tourism companies that the industry is missing out on recruiting the best new talent amongst top business graduates due to negative perceptions of the career opportunities available in the industry. A recent study from WTTC found that travel and tourism is viewed as a reasonably attractive industry for university graduates but one that is poorly understood. Programs like “30 Under 30” help to showcase the wealth of opportunity to young professionals in the destination marketing industry.

Two previous 30 Under 30 program participants were selected to serve as program ambassadors in 2014. Ambassadors attend DMAI Leadership events including the DMAI Board of Directors meeting, mentor newly selected 30 Under 30 program participants at the convention, participate within DMAI committees throughout the year and advocate for the 30 under 30 program at industry events.

2014 30 Under 30 Recipients: 

  • Katie Bishop, Convention & Visitors Bureau of Dunwoody, Executive Director
  • Leroy Bridges, Visit St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Digital Media & Content Generation Specialist
  • Mary Brooks, Greater Raleigh Convention & Visitors Bureau, Assistant Marketing Manager
  • Erin Brousseau, Providence Warwick CVB, Sales & Services Coordinator
  • Schuyler Bull, Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Marketing Manager
  • Kimberly Corbets, Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, Convention Sales Manager
  • Amanda Eckelbarger, Elkhart County, IN CVB, Publications/Graphic Designer
  • Jessica Fredrickson, Visit Salt Lake, Tourism Communications Manager
  • Joe Giessler, Tourism Ohio, Multimedia Marketing Coordinator
  • Brandon Hall, Discover Palm Beach County, Global Sales Specialist
  • Daniel Horsch, Visit Lubbock CVB, Interactive Marketing Coordinator
  • Lisa Huber, Visit Saint Paul, Marketing and Media Relations Manager
  • Elizabeth Huston, Visit Indy, Sales Manager
  • Cat Kessler, Asheville CVB, Online Content Manager
  • Eddie Kirsch, Visit Sarasota County, Content Coordinator
  • Jessica Leonard, Fayetteville Convention & Visitors Bureau, Communications Manager
  • Kat Lewis, Visit Tampa Bay, Online Relations Manager
  • Liz Mabe, Branson Lakes Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, Internet Content Manager
  • Amos Orr, Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana CVB, Destination Content Manager
  • Kyle Sadewhite, City of Independence Tourism, Sales Manager
  • Courtney Sculley, Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau, Account Manager
  • Shanna Smith, San Antonio Convention & Visitors Bureau, Partner Communications Manager
  • Ashley Steckel, VisitPITTSBURGH, Advertising Sales Director
  • Jen Valencic, Positively Cleveland, Corporate Partnership Consultant
  • Becca VanLandingham, Visit Florida, Executive Operations Representative
  • Sky Wheeler, Ocala/Marion County Visitors and Convention Bureau, Sales & Operations Manager
  • Brittany White, Oklahoma City CVB, Marketing & Communications Coordinator
  • Cynthia Wildman, Vancouver, Coast & Mountains Tourism Region, Manager, Consumer Marketing
  • Kristin Wing, Anaheim/Orange Country Visitor & Convention Bureau, Manager, Tourism Development
  • Aaron Wodin-Schwartz, Brand USA, Director, Public Policy

2014 30 Under 30 Ambassadors: 

  • Marcus Carney, Tacoma Regional Convention & Visitor Bureau, Director of Visitor Experience
  • Gabriele Dickson, College Park Convention and Visitors Bureau, Marketing & Project Manager