November 7, 2011
For more information:
360-750-1553 Ext 19
VANCOUVER USA REGIONAL TOURISM OFFICE ANNOUNCES WINNERS OF
2011 TOURISM AWARDS
VANCOUVER, Wash. -The Vancouver USA Regional Tourism Office today announced the
recipients of the fifth-annual Clark County Tourism Awards, recognizing key individuals and
organizations that have made significant contributions to tourism and economic growth in the region.
"There are many unsung heroes that have contributed greatly to tourism in Clark County," said Kim
Bennett, president and CEO of Vancouver USA Regional Tourism Office. "The Tourism Awards pay
tribute to these organizations and individuals that have gone above and beyond by displaying
ingenuity, innovation, and leadership when attracting tourists and visitors to Southwest Washington."
The following are the 2012 Tourism Award recipients.
Tom and Karen Hall, the owners and operators of the Camas Hotel, received the Tourism
Ambassador Award, which is bestowed upon individuals who continually strive to enhance the
experience of tourists visiting Clark County. The Halls have owned the historic hotel since
September of 2008 and in that time have made major renovations to the 100-year-old
Hoops on the River - Share of Vancouver, received the Spirit of Tourism Award, which
recognizes a business or organization that has contributed to the economic vitality of the
region through attracting visitors. The annual basketball tournament, now in its fifth year, is a
fundraiser for Share and draws large crowds of players and spectators to Southwest
Brian Davis, race director for Energy Events, was recognized with the Outstanding Tourism
Professional Award, which honors an individual who has gone the extra mile to promote the
tourism industry in Clark County. Davis founded and organizes annual runs in Clark County;
the newest and largest is the Vancouver USA Marathon, which was held for the first time in
June of 2011.The three winners were nominated by their peers and then selected by the Tourism Office board of
Tourism is a vital part of Clark County's economy and is one of the leading generators of employment
in the area. In the most recent annual numbers:
visitor spending in Clark County exceeded $364 million, with $45 million spent on lodging
tourism supported 3,720 jobs with a total of $99.3 million in earnings; and
also generated more than $27 million in local and state taxes.
This year, for the first time, local Chambers of Commerce co-sponsored the awards and solicited
nominations from their members. Sponsoring organizations include the Greater Vancouver Chamber
of Commerce, the Battle Ground Chamber of Commerce and the Camas Washougal Chamber of
Commerce. The City of Vancouver, Clark County Board of Commissioners, and the Clark County
Lodging Association are also supporting the awards.
Videos featuring interviews with the award recipients can be seen on the Tourism Office's website at
www.VisitVancouverUSA.com and on YouTube at www.youtube.com/user/VisitVancouverUSA .
About Vancouver USA Regional Tourism Office
Vancouver USA Regional Tourism Office (formerly Southwest Washington Convention & Visitors
Bureau) is an economic development organization responsible for competitively marketing Vancouver
and the surrounding area as a destination for meetings, conventions, and group and leisure travelers.
The organization's mission is to promote Vancouver and Clark County by increasing convention and
visitor business. For more information call 360-750-1553, or log on to www.VisitVancouverUSA.com .