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National Tourism Foundation to Honor William E. La Macchia

May 14, 2004

National Tourism Foundation to Honor William E. La Macchia
Lexington, Ky. – The National Tourism Foundation will welcome respected industry leader William E. La Macchia as the newest member of the Foundation’s Hall of Fame. La Macchia will be officially inducted at a dinner on Thursday, June 10, 2004 at The Westin Chicago River North in Chicago.

The evening will commence with the Foundation’s silent auction, accompanied by a reception with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. This year’s auction includes impressive artwork, travel packages and sports memorabilia. Proceeds will support the scholarships, internships, research grants and other programs offered by the Foundation for the benefit of today’s travel and tourism students.

La Macchia began his notable and impressive career in the travel industry in 1963, and in 1974, he founded Funjet Vacations. Nine years later, he established the Mark Travel Corporation to serve as parent company to Funjet Vacations and other travel-related brands. Today, the Mark Travel Corporation is recognized as one of the largest and most diversified leisure travel companies in the United States. The National Tourism Foundation is proud to honor La Macchia for his contributions to both the industry and the Foundation.

The Foundation Hall of Fame was created in 1998 as a means of recognizing individuals who are committed to furthering the Foundation’s mission. These individuals have contributed to the Foundation as a volunteer or through a financial commitment. La Macchia will join the ranks of 11 other travel professionals, including Arthur C. Tauck Jr., who was inducted in 2003, and Eric Friedheim, who was inducted in 2001.

Among the speakers for the evening are Dave Herren, representative of the Mark Travel Corporation and past Foundation Chairman, 2004 Foundation Chairman Roland Kreps, and 2003 Hall of Fame inductee Arthur C. Tauck Jr.

Sponsors of this year’s event include: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc, MGM MIRAGE, Sandals and Beaches Resorts, the Cancun Visitors and Convention Bureau, and the Mexican Caribbean Friends of the Foundation (Cozumel Hotel Association, Quintana Roo Hotel Association, Riviera Maya Hotel Association, El Dorado Spa, Resorts & Hotels, Karisma Hotels & Resorts, Lomas Travel, and Maroma Paradise).

Founded more than 20 years ago, the mission of the National Tourism Foundation is to benefit society through the support of education and research contributing to the values of travel and tourism and the preservation of tourism resources. The Foundation has awarded more than $1.5 million to travel and tourism students in the form of grants, scholarships and awards. Fore more information, visit

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