A Look Back at the 19th Annual American Indian Tourism Conference

From September 11 through 14, more than 250 tribal representatives, native business owners, tourism professionals and federal partners flocked to Green Bay, Wisconsin for the 19th Annual American Indian Tourism Conference.

The conference is a banner event for AIANTA, where in four days we bring the highest caliber speakers and professionals in Indian Country and in the tourism industry together to provide professional training, education and resources to tribes and native business owners from around the nation.

AIANTA was proud to welcome keynote addresses this year from national, renowned speakers including Ernie Stevens Jr., Chairman, National Indian Gaming Association; Dr. Gavin Clarkson, Esq., Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Economic Development Office of the Assistant Secretary, Indian Affairs; Fawn Sharp, President, Quinault Indian Nation; Aaron Woden-Schwartz, Vice President of Public Policy, Brand USA; Ben Keel (invited), Executive Director, White House Council on Native American Affairs; and Producers of the movie, Bright Path, The Jim Thorpe Story.

This year’s sessions featured topics including packaging a tour, attracting tour operators, creating itineraries, how to position your tribe for the international tourism market, developing tourism assessments and inventories, how to use the latest technologies and strategies for marketing and media, protecting intellectual and cultural property, collaborating with state and federal agencies, discovering agritourism, culinary trends and more.

Find all of the AITC breakout session presentations at AIANTA.org.


The 2017 AITC also featured a special session where AIANTA hosted a Tribal Executive Leadership Roundtable. The roundtable included discussion from Chris Thompson, United South and East Tribes and new Eastern Regional Board Representative for AIANTA; Dawn Melvin, Tribal Tourism Relations Manager at the Arizona Office of Tourism; Myrna Gardner Tlingit and Haida Central Council; and Travis Owens, Director of Cultural Tourism & Community Relations, Cherokee Nation Businesses and AIANTA At-Large Board Member. The dynamic discussion included topics of tourism in all regions and implementation of the NATIVE Act

This year’s sessions featured topics including packaging a tour, attracting tour operators, creating itineraries, how to position your tribe for the international tourism market, developing tourism assessments and inventories, how to use the latest technologies and strategies for marketing and media, protecting intellectual and cultural property, collaborating with state and federal agencies, discovering agritourism, culinary trends and more.

Find all of the AITC breakout session presentations at AIANTA.org.


The 2017 AITC also featured a special session where AIANTA hosted a Tribal Executive Leadership Roundtable. The roundtable included discussion from Chris Thompson, United South and East Tribes and new Eastern Regional Board Representative for AIANTA; Dawn Melvin, Tribal Tourism Relations Manager at the Arizona Office of Tourism; Myrna Gardner Tlingit and Haida Central Council; and Travis Owens, Director of Cultural Tourism & Community Relations, Cherokee Nation Businesses and AIANTA At-Large Board Member. The dynamic discussion included topics of tourism in all regions and implementation of the NATIVE Act.

Unique to AITC, each year there is a designated “Regalia Day,” where tribal representatives from across the country wear traditional regalia, showcasing the diversity of Indian Country’s cultures throughout all regions of the U.S.

Before we look towards AITC 2018, we wanted to take a moment to thank our host Oneida Nation for their warm welcome and gracious hospitality

A Warm Thank You to Our Partners

Bureau of Indian Affairs

Bureau of Indian Affairs Logo

Native American Agriculture Fund

Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail

Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail

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Education & Training

Technical assistance and training is the heartbeat of our work at AIANTA. We provide general and tailored technical assistance, training and education in a variety of ways.

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International Outreach

AIANTA plays a critical role in supporting the National Travel and Tourism Strategy to bring more visitors to the United States, especially in our participation at trade shows internationally and domestically, to promote tourism in Indian Country.

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Membership

Through AIANTA membership, tribes, the tourism industry and other partners form a dynamic network of shared experiences, resources and support.

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