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    April 04, 2019
    Mary Seely, Director, Convention & Visitors Bureau is a graduate of the Iowa Tourism Leadership Institute held March 27-29 at The Hotel Kirkwood in Cedar Rapids, IA.  The institute provides Iowa tourism professionals an opportunity to expand their leadership knowledge and skills. 

    Institute attendees included six first-year graduates, eleven graduates who returned for a second year of training, and one graduate returning for a third year.  Industry members apply to attend the Institute and as part of the application process must demonstrate their involvement in the tourism industry and leadership qualities.  New this year was an alumni program and six industry members returned as alumni of the program.     

    Curriculum for the Institute includes core courses in developing your leadership influence, marketing and branding, building effective board/staff partnerships, innovation and leading in times of change.  Electives featured sessions in working with volunteers, running effective meetings, problem solving, time management strategies, financial/fraud control, and social media marketing.  Speakers for the Institute are professionals with expertise in leadership and various disciplines related to tourism. 

    The Leadership Institute is a statewide partnership coordinated by the Central Iowa Tourism Region and the Eastern Iowa Tourism Association with funding from the Iowa Tourism Office.  “Attendees came from across the state and we are pleased to provide an outstanding professional development and networking opportunity to existing and emerging leaders within the tourism industry,” said Ann Vogelbacher, Executive Director of the Central Iowa Tourism Region. “This partnership provides a platform for learning and comradery.  The participants and presenters are able to interact on various topics and build long lasting relationships with their statewide peers,” noted Carrie Koelker, Executive Director of the Eastern Iowa Tourism Association.

    Photo Caption:  Mary Seely was part of the year two class and is pictured with fellow institute attendees. 

    If you would like more information about the Iowa Tourism Leadership Institute contact Ann Vogelbacher, Central Iowa Tourism Region at 800-285-5842 or ann@iowatourism.com or Carrie Koelker, Eastern Iowa Tourism Association at 800-891-3482 or carrie@easterniowatourism.org.    
    Karen Friis, Administrative Services Coordinator
    (563) 559-2190