Governor O’Malley Names Six Industry Leaders to Maryland Tourism Development Board
BALTIMORE (August 6, 2012) – Governor Martin O’Malley recently appointed six new members to the Maryland Tourism Development Board. The 24-member Board provides oversight for the Maryland Office of Tourism Development, the tourism marketing arm of the State.
Beginning their first term are James A. Grube, owner of Slack Winery and Woodlawn Estate, Ridge, MD; Patricia C. Heffelfinger, Executive Director of The Maryland Soccer Foundation, Boyds, MD; James Matthew Neitzey, Executive Director, Prince Georges County, Maryland Conference & Visitors Bureau, Largo, MD; Raymond L. Nelson, Vice President Customer Service & Quality Assurance, Veolia Transportation, Baltimore; Winifred J. Roche, Tourism & Marketing Manager, Harford County Office of Economic Development, Bel Air, MD; and Gail E. Smith-Howard, General Manager, Hyatt Regency, Baltimore City.
“Each of the new Maryland Tourism Development Board members understands the significant impact that tourism has on Maryland’s economy and on our quality of life,” said Gov. Martin O’Malley. “We are fortunate to have their combined years of experience and insight guiding our tourism efforts and continuing the growth of this $13.1 billion industry in Maryland.”
The board is made up of leaders from hospitality-related industries – lodging, retail, transportation, food service and attractions – along with six members of Maryland’s General Assembly and representatives from the Maryland Association of Destination Marketing Organizations. It has broad policy powers authorized by the General Assembly to guide the direction of the Maryland Office of Tourism and its activities developing and marketing the State as a world-class destination.
“We’re pleased to have these six tourism industry professionals join the Maryland Tourism Board,” said Margot Amelia, executive director of the Maryland Office of Tourism Development. “We look forward to their input and experience as we promote Maryland with the mission of increasing visitor spending in the state.”
The Maryland Office of Tourism is an agency of the Division of Tourism, Film and the Arts within the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development. Recently reported visitor data shows that the state welcomed more than 32.2 million visitors in 2010. Those visitors spent nearly $13.1 billion on travel-related expenses – generating close to $1.9 billion in state and local taxes and providing 130,000 jobs to Maryland residents.