FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nancy Hamilton, Lee Rose
Durant Earn Esteemed Tourism Industry Accreditation
LEE ISLAND COAST, FL – Mark Crabb,
deputy director, and Judi Durant, visitor and community relations manager for
the Lee Island Coast Visitor and Convention Bureau (VCB) in southwest Florida,
recently graduated from the International Association of Convention and Visitors
Bureaus’ (IACVB) executive program in destination management at the
association’s annual conference in Vancouver, British Columbia.
The Certified Destination Management
Executive (CDME) program was established in 1993 and is recognized as the
tourism industry’s highest educational achievement.
The program is accredited by IACVB and jointly offered by the World
Tourism Management Research Center at the University of Calgary and Purdue
“With the tourism marketplace
continuously changing and increasingly competitive, earning the CDME designation
is an important achievement,” said D.T. Minich, VCB executive director and
1998 CDME graduate. “The VCB and
the Lee County Tourist Development Council are proud of this accomplishment from
Mark and Judi and their commitment to our organization.”
Crabb replaced Minich as deputy
director in February 2002, who was promoted to VCB executive director in
November 2000. A seasoned tourism
professional, Crabb assists in strategic planning and directing the VCB’s
various activities and programs, such as marketing and sales initiatives, as
well as involvement in the creation, implementation, and supervision of tourism
promotions, advertising, and hospitality services for both the domestic and
joining the VCB as visitor services coordinator in 1996, Durant’s sharp
customer service-oriented skills helped her achieve the current position of
visitor and community relations manager. Her
primary responsibility is coordinating a staff of approximately 100 volunteers
to welcome and inform arriving visitors at Southwest Florida International
Airport and Visit Florida state welcome centers. Durant also oversees the VCB’s visitor assistance program
that provides varying types of aid for travelers with emergencies.
Other duties include coordinating the VCB’s Guests First customer
service training program, which was developed to benefit the local hospitality
industry and allied businesses, and the “E” Awards program, responsible for
recognizing excellence in customer service.
The CDME program focuses on vision,
leadership, and business strategy implementation.
Senior executives and managers of destinations take such courses as
Strategic Issues in Destination Management, Destination Marketing Planning,
Destination Leadership, Destination Information and Research, Festivals and
Events Tourism, International Tourism and Convention Marketing, Destination
Financial Management, Communication and Technology, and Rural and Small
Community Destination Management. In
addition, the program requires four research papers.
In 1999, VCB Sales Director Pamela Johnson received the CDME designation, while Senior Sales Manager Gary Ewen earned IACVB’s certification in Tourism Marketing. Other VCB staff members are currently enrolled in IACVB’s various educational programs.
Lee Island Coast is located on the Gulf of Mexico in southwest Florida and
includes Sanibel/Captiva/Pine islands, Fort Myers Beach, historic Fort Myers,
Cape Coral, Bonita Springs and Estero, North Fort Myers, Boca Grande, and Lehigh
Acres. For more information, visit
our Web site at www.LeeIslandCoast.com
NOTE NEW AREA CODE EFFECTIVE MARCH 2002: 239.