Two Alaskans elected to the Board of Directors of the U.S. Travel Association
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Fairbanks, Alaska (AK) – Camille Ferguson, executive director of the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association, and Deb Hickok, president and CEO of Explore Fairbanks, were recently elected to three-year terms on the Board of Directors of the U.S. Travel Association.
Ferguson is Tlingit from the Kiksadi Clan and a citizen of the Sitka Tribe of Alaska. During her 31-year career in the tourism industry, she has served as the Economic Development Director for Sitka Tribe of Alaska and on the board of the Sitka Convention & Visitors Bureau. Ferguson began the annual Alaska Heritage and Cultural Tourism Conference; and served as general manager for Shee Atika Corporation’s Totem Square Inn, a native-owned hotel. Under her leadership, AIANTA received national recognition when presented with the President’s “E” Award for Exports by the President of the United States for increasing exports. She served as interim executive director of AIANTA from July to December 2011 and became director in 2013.
Hickok has been professional in the field of destination marketing and management for nearly 37 years. She worked in Pennsylvania tourism until moving to Alaska in 1999 to become CEO of Explore Fairbanks. Throughout her career, Hickok has served in various leadership roles in both states. She previously served on the U.S. Travel Destinations Council. Under her guidance, Explore Fairbanks has received numerous awards, including the Governor of Alaska’s Exporter of the Year Award and the Destiny Award from the U.S. Travel Destinations Council. Hickok currently serves on two other boards of directors, the Alaska Travel Industry Association which she chaired in 2011 and the Greater Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce.
Both Ferguson and Hickok are recipients of the Denali Award from the Alaska Travel Industry Association which “is presented to a living individual for his or her outstanding leadership, professional excellence, and personal contribution to the Alaska travel industry.” They are the first Alaskans to serve on the U.S. Travel board.
U.S. Travel is the national, non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry that generates $2.4 trillion in economic output and supports 15.6 million jobs. U.S. Travel’s mission is to increase travel to and within the United States. For more information on the organization, visit www.ustravel.org.
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About Explore Fairbanks
Explore Fairbanks is a non-profit marketing and management organization whose mission is to be an economic driver in the Fairbanks region by marketing to potential visitors and optimizing the visitor experience. Explore Fairbanks markets Fairbanks as a year-round destination by promoting local events, attractions and activities to independent travelers, group tour operators, travel agents, meeting planners and the media as well as by developing public policy and infrastructure to achieve marketing objectives. explorefairbanks.com
For more than two decades, the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association (AIANTA) has served as the national center for providing tourism and recreational travel technical assistance, training and capacity building to American Indian nations. AIANTA is a 501(c)(3) national nonprofit association of Native American tribes and tribal businesses and was incorporated in 2002 to advance Indian Country tourism. AIANTA’s mission is to define, introduce, grow and sustain American Indian and Alaska Native tourism that honors traditions and values. www.aianta.org.
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