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The 2013 NTA Slate | NTA Young Professionals Take Wing

November 6, 2012

Volume 32, Issue 46




Interested in advertising in Tuesday? Email Karla DiNardo.

Election Day Special: The 2013 NTA Slate
Are You a Young Professional? Join Us!
Resilient Residents, Companies Recovering from Sandy
Learn How Your Vote Counts in Local Lobbying 101
Members Find Morocco ‘Full of Surprises’
PHOTO: NTA Staff in Costume
Grassroots Gathering in DC to Grow and Change in 2013
The V Pin Awaits
Join the Member Markets Pavilion
Welcome to NTA’s Newest Members
Industry News and Updates

Election Day Special: The 2013 NTA Slate  

Election Day in the United States is a good day to announce the slate of candidates for the 2013 NTA Board of Directors, named by the NTA Nominating Committee.VotingBox After vetting the applications and considering the applicants’ qualifications, geographic representation and business type, the committee composed the following slate:
Vice Chair: Paul Nakamoto, Super Sightseeing Tours
Secretary/Treasurer: Jorge Cazenave, Cazenave Argentina
Tour Operator Director: Jay Smith, Sports Travel and Tours
Tour Operator Director: Dawn Rueckl, Wells Gray Tours Ltd.
Tour Operator Director: Anbritt Stengele, Sports Traveler LLC
Tour Supplier Director: Jim Magrath, Delta Air Lines Inc.
DMO Director: Patti Culp, Alabama Travel Council Inc.

Operators will vote for operator candidates and officers, suppliers for supplier candidates, and DMOs for DMO candidates. To learn more about the candidates, look for their profiles on later this week. The committee will accept additional nominations from the membership through Nov. 27. If you are interested in nominating someone "from the floor," please contact Beth Ward.

Ballots will be distributed by e-mail to members Dec. 5; if you need a paper ballot, please contact Beth Ward. Online voting will open Dec. 5 and end Jan. 15. You’ll have a final opportunity to vote at Travel Exchange, during Talk Time on Monday, Jan. 21, from 9:15 to 11:15 a.m.  After voting closes at Travel Exchange, the results will be tallied and the 2013 NTA Board will be announced in Orlando.

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Are You a Young Professional? Join Us! 

We can’t hold it in any longer! A new group has spread its wings here at NTA, and we’re beyond excited. The NTA Young Professionals group is a dynamic development for the association, and they will be meeting for the first time at Travel Exchange during the NTA Young Professionals Town Hall on Sunday, Jan. 20, from 4:15 to 5:30 p.m.

If you’re part of the generation that is the future of the travel industry, don’t miss this opportunity to connect with your peers and be part of the inaugural town hall meeting. These are just a few of the topics to be covered:

  • Business development opportunities and getting up to speed on what NTA offers
  • The path of a young professional and the challenges they face
  • Finding professional development opportunities
  • Generational marketing and how to deal with the divide
  • Creating a personal and professional brand
  • Social media and how it applies at work
  • and plenty more as the meeting progresses!

Join other young professionals and our facilitators, Eric Lynberg from Super Sightseeing Tours and Anbritt Stengele from Sports Traveler LLC, to share and network with others who can closely identify with your experiences. You’ll be in on the beginning of something great. And if you’re on Twitter, be sure to connect with the NTA Young Professionals at #NTAyp.

A special shout out to these five NTA young professionals who collaborated on the formation of this group: Elizabeth Baranik from Hard Rock International, Jigger Abendano from the San Diego CVB, Stephanie Dilling from Wells Gray Tours, and our two moderators, Anbritt and Eric. Thank you!

Oh, and if you haven’t already signed up for Travel Exchange, now is the time! You can check out the full schedule of events here.

See you in Orlando! 

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Resilient Residents, Companies Recovering from Sandy 

Millions of people and thousands of businesses felt the impact of Hurricane Sandy SandyHurricanelast week. NTA has heard from members whose spirit and resilience remain strong as they overcome a series of challenges to get back on their feet. We will continue to serve as a conduit of information for those members.

To announce schedule adjustments or to request assistance from other members, post a message on the NTA Facebook page. Our Headlines page also serves as a bulletin board; if your website has updates, send a link to NTA HQ, and we’ll post it in the Headlines story.

Our friends at NYC & Co. have been diligent about updating information regarding transportation, hotels, attractions, restaurants and Broadway. For updates, visit the DMO’s Facebook page.

And for a personal account of neighborhood’s damage-and its indomitable spirit-see this column from our friend David Cogswell: Adventure Travel in Hoboken.

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Learn How Your Vote Counts in Local Lobbying 101  

As a member of NTA, you have the power to make your voice heard and fight for change!

This year at Travel Exchange 2013, Steve Richer and panelists Patti Culp, John Shaffer and Taunya Wolfe Finn will discuss how you can advocate on behalf of your company or destination as well as travel and tourism overall at the Local Lobbying 101 educational seminar.

"If you’re a business person, or if you work for a business in this country, it’s important to know what’s going on in Washington. It’s also important to know what’s going on in your own state, or your own city, but it’s important to know what’s going on in Washington, because it impacts travel and impacts our careers."
—Mark Hoffmann, CTP, CEO of Sports Leisure Vacations

If you want to make a meaningful difference within the travel industry or in your own town, join Steve and the panelists on Wednesday, Jan. 23, 3:15–4:30 p.m. to learn how! Another great way to support NTA Government Relations is to sign up for the 5K Fun(d) Run this year at Travel Exchange!

Click here  to see the entire slate of educational seminars at Travel Exchange ’13. 

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Members Find Morocco ‘Full of Surprises’ 

NTA members who explored the "Exotic Land of Morocco" during the Montage productJim Reddekopp Cropped development trip experienced an incredible journey, said Jim Reddekopp Jr., NTA chair and PDT participant.

"The Morocco PDT was full of surprises: the sights, sounds and smells revealed a land of ancient history and welcoming hospitality," Reddekopp said. "We walked through Roman ruins, experienced a time before the birth of Christ and learned about the Muslim, Jewish and Christian faiths."

The trip, Oct. 20–30, was hosted by Morocco Destination Management, and owner Sam Nhairy reported a memorable trip. "By visiting historic sights and experiencing a variety of Moroccan foods and entertainment, the group learned what Morocco has to offer to travelers," he said. "They rode camels, ate at a Pasha’s house-turned-restaurant, and visited a Kasbah, where they met with local villagers preparing their holiday feast."

Reddekopp said the trip dispelled a common misconception: that Northern Africa is not a safe place to send guests. "We found it just the opposite," he said. "My company thrives on bringing authenticity to our guests, and Morocco was everything I could have imagined and more. This was a trip of a lifetime."

Reddekopp was complimentary of the hosts, thanking Nhairy’s team for sharing their homeland with passion and knowledge. He is also upbeat about the value of such excursions. "NTA has proven again that with Montage, we can network within our membership to showcase new destinations for tour operators to build authentic product."

The next Montage PDT is "Discovering Israel and Jordan," a trip to the Holy Land set for Feb. 10–22. For more information, follow this link.

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PHOTO: NTA Staff in Costume 


Q. Where can you find a spy, a jellyfish, a back-eyed pea and an Egyptian princess?

A. NTA Headquarters-on Halloween, of course. The staff celebrated the occasion in costume with a noontime chili taste-off. You didn’t think we wore blue NTA shirts every day, did you?

Front row, left to right: Britanny Mackin, Cheryl Adams (peace child), Tiffany Cochran (spy), Claudia Duncan, Allison Johnson, Lauren Ashley Pope, Laura Scott. Middle: Cathy Boyd, Karla DiNardo, Beth Engel, Laura Raines, Jonathon Patrick, Kristi Yahn, Catherine Prather, Bob Rouse. Back: Pat Henderson, Phillip Strunk, Doug Rentz, Susan McDaniel, Lisa Simon, Kevin Wright, Beth Ward.

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Grassroots Gathering in DC to Grow and Change in 2013

Next April, NTA will join with three other associations for Destination: Capitol Hill on April 10 and 11 in Washington, D.C. The event is coordinated by U.S. Travel Association, with support from NTA, Southeast Tourism Society and Destination Marketing Association International.

Destination: Capitol Hill will replace Grassroots Congressional Travel Summit, building on the tradition of the event’s focus on important legislation, said Steve Richer, NTA’s public affairs advocate.

"We’re expecting a much bigger event at a time when it’s critical for members of the travel sector to speak in a well-coordinated voice," Richer said. "During the 113th Congress, we will work together for reauthorization of the Corporation for Travel Promotion, which funds Brand USA."

Richer added that attendees will target other important issues and legislation, including the JOLT Act (Jobs Originated through Launching Travel). "NTA understands that nothing gets done in D.C. without working together as strategic partners," he added. 

As details of this event are determined, we will pass them along in Tuesday.

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The V Pin Awaits 

This is one pin you can’t simply pick up at NTA Central during Travel Exchange. You have to earn it. Wearers of this elegant "V Pin" are volunteers, willing to share theirVolunteerPin2013 time to help make Travel Exchange a more productive and enjoyable event for all. (And did we mention it’s a great way to network and meet more people?) There are many ways to earn the V Pin:

  • Mentors for Tourism Cares students—Share your NTA and industry experience with the 2012 Tourism Cares scholarship recipients by allowing them to shadow you during your appointments.
  • Greeters—Welcome your peers, help point them in the right direction and hand out Travel Exchange Daily.
  • Registration—Hand out registration bags and badges and answer general questions.
  • Luncheon/Opening Ceremony volunteers—Assist with pre-dining set-up of centerpieces and promotional materials from sponsors.
  • Seminar monitors—Serve as the contact person for a featured speaker, count the number of seminar attendees and (possibly) introduce speakers.
  • Tourism Rocks—No one throws a party quite like Tourism Cares, and you can help make this fundraising, networking event a success.

If you’re ready to volunteer in Orlando (and have fun doing it), we need you! Sign up to volunteer here. You’ll need to be registered first, though, right? Go here to register.

Questions about volunteering? Email NTA Headquarters or call 800.682.8886 (U.S. & Canada) or +1 859.264.6540.

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Join the Member Markets Pavilion 

Travel Exchange will be fertile ground for operators to expand their tour portfolio. And now they have another place to find new travel products, services or destinations?MemberMarketsPavilion

Member Markets Pavilion debuts in Orlando, providing a section on the convention floor set aside for delegates to collect information on targeted markets such as faith-based, family or adventure travel. Other markets-traditional, emerging and growth-are also expected to be represented in the pavilion by operators, suppliers and destinations.

To learn more about how you can secure a counter in this special area, contact Kevin Wright, NTA’s director of growth markets, by phone (859.264.6565) or by email. And to get all the details on Travel Exchange, visit the website.

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Welcome to NTA’s Newest Members  

NTA’s most recent additions come from five countries (Canada, Ethiopia, Israel, 6.12.12NewUnited States and Zimbabwe) and 14 U.S. states (California, Georgia, Hawai‘i, Idaho, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming).

For the complete list, follow this link to NTA Online. You’ll find contact names and business websites.

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Industry News and Updates

  • U.S. consumers were more confident about economic prospects in October than any other time during the past five years, according to a University of Michigan survey. Respondents judged current conditions 18 percent better than this time last year, with expectations more than 50 percent higher.
  • Hawai‘i has seen a jump in visitors (up 9.6 percent) and visitor spending (up 19.5 percent) during the first nine months of 2012. Arrivals from the U.S. West increased, while arrivals from the U.S. East declined.
  • After a three-percent increase in August (over last year), international visitors’ spending on travel and tourism-related activities in the United States has increased, on average, more than $1.0 billion a month during the first eight months of 2012.

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