Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau (LRCVB) President and CEO Gretchen Hall has been named 2020-2021 chair-elect of Destinations International (DI) Board of Directors, having served most recently as the board’s secretary/treasurer.
Destinations International is the world’s largest resource for official destination organizations, convention and visitors bureaus (CVBs) and tourism boards. Destinations International serves destination marketing professionals, and has almost 6,000 members and partners from nearly 600 destinations across 13 countries.
“I am honored to serve as chair-elect of the Destinations International Board of Directors,” said Hall. “It is a great privilege to represent Arkansas’s capital city and its travel and tourism industry, especially in these ever-changing, uncertain times.”
Like so many destinations, Little Rock’s tourism industry has been devastated due to COVID-19, experiencing multi-million-dollar losses in the local restaurant and hotel industry, hundreds of convention and meeting cancellations and a sharp decrease in enplanements.
Pre COVID-19, tourism was the state’s second largest economic driver. Little Rock and surrounding Pulaski County accounted for $1.8 billion in travel spending, resulting in 25% of the state’s overall travel expenditures.
“In these challenging times, it is important for us to collectively work together and find creative ways to rise to the occasion with a razor-sharp focus on our vital industry’s recovery and rebuilding,” said Hall. “DI has helped aggregate and provide tremendous resources for our industry during this pandemic,” she stated.
LRCVB serves as the official destination marketing organization for the City of Little Rock. LRCVB also manages public meeting facilities including the Statehouse Convention Center, Robinson Center, Ottenheimer Market Hall, First Security Amphitheater, and multiple public parking facilities.
In addition to serving on the Destinations International Executive Committee and Board of Directors, Hall is the President of the Heart of Arkansas Regional Tourism Association, past President of the Arkansas Travel Council, past Chair of the Arkansas Association of CVBs, past President of Skål Arkansas, an executive committee member of the Downtown Little Rock Partnership, and serves on the board of directors for the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce. She is also a member of the US Travel Association, Southeast Tourism Society and Little Rock Rotary – Club 99. She is a Certified Meeting Professional and Certified Destination Management Executive.