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A Season of Thanks!
As we wrap up a year that will undoubtedly go down as one of the most challenging for the Salt Lake hospitality community and the tourism industry as a whole, I owe a great deal of thanks and sincere gratitude to so many individuals and organizations that have helped steer me through my first nine months in this role.
The Executive Committee, and entire VSL Board, offered incredible insight and support through the interim and transition, particularly Taylor Vriens, our Board Chair. Trust me when I say I leaned on Taylor’s knowledge and incredibly positive outlook a number of times as I navigated both my new role and the impact of COVID-19 on our collective community, which literally came to light on my first day.
I also owe a debt of gratitude to the entire VSL staff for their ability to pivot in order to address the most pressing needs of our members, stakeholders, community and clients; I’m humbled to call this collective group “my team.” A genuine “Thanks“ also goes to our community and industry partners, including Vicki Varela and her amazing team at the UOT, with whom we were able to collaborate on a number of programs to assist the County and State’s hospitality community, such as KSL’s Mighty Main Street, which features local businesses making up the fabric of both Salt Lake as well as that of Utah’s rural landscape.
I’d be remiss if I failed to give a very special and sincere “Thank you!” to Mayor Jenny Wilson and her incredibly supportive team at the County. Through all of the challenges 2020 has presented, the County has been nothing short of amazing, creative and supportive. This is particularly true of their full support of our seemingly endless request for CARES Act grants, funds that have allowed us to implement programs to assist you, our valued members, including GBAC Accreditation, our “Salt Lake Bound = FREEdom Found” promotion and the creation of the VSL Media Center, to name but a few.
And speaking of the media center, this facility is being designed to assist with our recovery efforts and will enhance future meetings, conventions and events—an asset meeting professionals are now looking for and expecting. Speaking of future group business, it’s important to note that our sales team has booked 120 groups in 2020 that will bring to Salt Lake nearly 500,000 attendees and add more than $350 million to our visitor economy.
And lastly, thank you, our members and partners, for all you do and your continued support of Visit Salt Lake.