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State of Tourism in Florida Luncheon Address

Tourism "Power Players" Awards Luncheon | Kenneth Lawson, President & CEO, Visit Florida | 12:15 - 1:45pm

The Cultural & Heritage Tourism Summit will acknowledge and honor the "Best of the Best" in Tourism celebrating Convention & Visitors Bureaus, Meeting & Event Planners, Tour Operators, Tour Guides, Travel Agents, Local Attractions, City/County Cultural Affairs agencies, Creatives and Tourism-Related Businesses.

Nominate a Tourism Power Player today! Self-nominations are welcome.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

State of Cultural Heritage Tourism | Location: Renaissance Plantation Hotel | 9:45am
Speaker: Eugene Franklin, Director, National Cultural Heritage Tourism Society & CEO, Florida Black Chamber of Commerce

Opening Session: Expanding Local Tourism Landscapes through Cultural & Heritage Tourism | Location: Renaissance Plantation Hotel | 10:15am

Keynote Speaker: Rosemary Rice McCormick, President of Shop America and US Cultural & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council, Producer of the ONE Travel Conference and Co-Founder, SHOP America Alliance

summit synergy sessions topics

FRIday, May 18, 2018

General Session: Let's CHAT Talk Show

Special guest multicultural & heritage leaders from Harlem, Philadelphia, St. Augustine and Orlando will discuss their community models and market strategies for building vibrant cultural & heritage tourism districts. Confirmed guests include:

     Stephanie M. Jones, President, Cultural Heritage Alliance for Tourism, Inc. (HOST)

     Greg DeShields, Executive Director, PhlDiversity, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau

     Arminda Figueroa, Founder & President, Latin2Latin Marketing+Communications, LLC

     Neal Shoemaker, Owner, Harlem Heritage Tours

     Andrew Witt, Executive Director, St. John's County Cultural Council

​​​​​​TRACK ONE WORKSHOPS (For Small Businesses, Attractions, Tour Operators & Tour Guides) 
Building Relationships with Key Tourism & Travel Professionals & Associations to drive tourists & dollars to your business/attraction. Networking with tourism professionals who can drive tourists and tourism dollars to your business or attraction can be costly. You will learn how to approach and work with Convention & Visitor Bureaus, hotel concierges, meeting & event planners, and destination management companies who hire all types of vendors and make visitor recommendations for places to see and things to do. Confirmed speakers include:
     Kelly Tortoriello, VP Strategic Client Services, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau (MODERATOR)
     Raul Maceira, President, Gold Coast Concierge Association
     Heather Andrews, Associate VP, Content & Community Engagement, Discover The Palm Beaches
     Tina Boris Lafferty, Director, Destination Services, COTC Events

Hear from digital marketing, virtual reality & Online Travel Agent experts on how to build a technology-based operated business. Learn how digital marketing strategies, social media marketing platforms and virtual reality technology can revolutionize the way you do business. 
     Michael Hall, Founder, Digital Grass Innovation & Marketing, Co-host, Tech Beats & Bytes (MODERATOR)

     Evie Hernandez, Chief Marketing Officer, XoomIM Inbound SMarketing & Certified Constant Contact Expert
     Michelle McKoy, Co-Founder, Miami VR Expo & President, Virtual Reality Augmented Reality Miami Chapter

     Nashara Frazier, Area Manager, Expedia

TRACK TWO WORKSHOPS (For Tourism Professionals: CVBs, Concierges, DMCs, Meeting Planners & Travel Agents) 
Speaking ALL Languages: Marketing to multicultural audiences is not a one size fits all strategy. A dynamic conversation with multicultural marketing experts on understanding diverse audiences and the best marketing strategies & tactics to reach them. Confirmed speakers include:

     Dr. Kitty Oliver, Author, Historian, Multicultural Consultant, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau (MODERATOR)

     Maria Aleandra Rodriguez, Hispanic Marketing Consultant & former Telemundo Hispanic Market Director

     Fabiola Fleuranvil, President, Blueprint Creative Group & Visit Florida Multicultural Marketing Agency of Record

​     Joshua J. Ho, Director, Miami-Dade Asian Advisory Board

People, Places, Perceptions: Changing stereotypes and negative perceptions to attract more locals, tourists and new businesses to heritage neighborhoods and multicultural communities.  What does it take and who does it take to change stereotypes and perceptions about multicultural neighborhoods to drive more locals and visitors to these destinations? What role does media play in balancing the messaging and imagery of these neighborhoods? Top media and marketing professionals share their perspectives on what's working, what's not working and solutions to drive visitors and businesses to urban communities. Confirmed speakers include:

     Jill Tracey, On-Air Personality & Talk Show Host, 105.1FM (MODERATOR)

     Sharon West McCormick, VP of Marketing, Redevelopment Management Associates (RMA)

     Suzan McDowell, President & CEO, Circle of One Marketing, Inc.

     Ann Marie Sorrell, President & CEO, The Mosaic Group

Gentrification, Community Development & Tourism: An important panel discussion with leading real estate & community developers who are implementing creative community development strategies in heritage neighborhoods & urban communities and the role tourism plays in fueling these local economies. Does tourism really benefit heritage & urban neighborhoods? If so, how are residents and small businesses being engaged by real estate developers and surviving & thriving through gentrification? Confirmed speakers include:

     D'Wayne Spence, City of Fort Lauderdale Northwest-Progresso-Flagler Heights CRA Manager (MODERATOR)

     Miguel Pilgram, CEO & Real Estate Developer, The Pilgram Group

     Don McCraw, Real Estate Developer & Founder, FAT Village Arts District

     Willie Logan, Founder & CO, Opa-locka Community Development Corporation

TRACK THREE WORKSHOPS (For Individual Interested or New Tourism Professionals & Businesses)

The Creative Economy: How to Monetize Cultural Arts by becoming both creative-minded & business-minded. This informative conversation focuses on the business of the arts and the creative economy as a powerful engine of growth and community vitality that engages artists, cultural organizations, and creative businesses that generate jobs and revenue. Confirmed speakers include:

     Ashlee Thomas, President, Miami Urban Contemporary Experience (MODERATOR)

     David Muir, Owner, David Muir Photography & Sailboat Bend Artist in Residence

     Evan Snow, Co-Founder 954 & Art Lauderdale

Travel & Tourism Business Ownership Opportunities: Why Not You? How to get a piece of this multi-billion dollar industry.  You don't know what you don't know! Or, do you? Come learn about the various types of businesses that cater to the travel & tourism industry and how you can position your existing business to tap into this multi-billion industry. Our panel members will share how they started a tourism-related business and how you can create your own space in this industry. Confirmed speakers include:

     Lindsey Norris, Broward Director, Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association (MODERATOR)

     Kristin Kitchen, President, Sojourn Heritage Hotels

     Margie Jordan, VP of Agency Education, CCRA Travel Commerce Network & Owner, Jordan Executive Travel Service

     Darren Whitaker, Owner, Crabman 305 Restaurant


The Future of Tourism: Introducing, preparing & positioning millenials & newcomers for hospitality & tourism careers. This panel of hospitality & tourism power players will provide a great wealth of insight on how to prepare and excel in this industry. Whether you are a student just entering the field, a millennial looking to advance your career or are a newcomer to the industry, you definitely want to hear how to position yourself for success in the travel & tourism industry. Confirmed speakers include:

     DeAnne Connolly Graham, President, ROI Media Consultants, Inc. & Hospitality & Tourism Professional (MODERATOR)

     Heiko Dobrikow, EVP, The Las Olas Company & General Manager, Riverside Hotel

     Sandy Dorsainvil, President, Maximillian Consultants, Tourism & Community Development

     Lynne Hernandez, South Florida & Treasure Coast Regional Director, Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Pre-Summit Symposium (Complimentary Admission) | Location: Mount Hermon AME Church, Fort Lauderdale | 12:00 -4:00pm

The Heart of Heritage Neighborhoods: A Rich Conversation led by a diverse panel of local historians & leaders of cultural & heritage organizations on the historical & economic impact of tourism for heritage communities and historic sites, followed by an Author's Book Signing. Tourism professionals, educators, community & civic leaders, elected officials, students & media are invited to attend. Confirmed speakers include:

       Derek Davis, Former Director, Old Dillard Museum (MODERATOR)                                 

       Dr. Marvin Dunn, Historian, Author, Professor, Florida International University

       Graylyn Swilley-Woods, Executive Director, Overtown Children & Youth Coalition & Senior Consultant, Multicultural Tourism Initiatives

       Dr. Paul S. George, HistoryMiami Historian, Author & Professor, Miami-Dade Community College                                           

       Don Mizell, Historian & Media Producer