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2012 Florida Tourism Industry Awards Announced

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September 6, 2012

2012 Florida Tourism Industry Awards Announced

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (September 6, 2012) – During the 45th Annual Florida Governor’s Conference on Tourism, held September 5-7 at the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld, VISIT FLORIDA announced the 2012 Florida Tourism Hall of Fame inductee, as well as the winners of the Flagler and Iris Larson Awards. Annually, leaders in Florida tourism are chosen by a selection committee to receive these prestigious honors and awards.

Florida Tourism Hall of Fame

Since 2001, one individual is chosen annually to be inducted into the Florida Tourism Hall of Fame. This honor, presented by the VISIT FLORIDA Board of Directors, recognizes contemporary and historic figures whose vision, creativity and drive have had a positive and significant impact on the development of Florida as a desirable visitor destination.

The 2012 Florida Tourism Hall of Fame inductee is the Chairman of the Board of the AAA Auto Club Group, Robert R. “Bob??? Sharp. Utilizing his partnerships with cruise lines, tourist attractions and the CVBs, he spearheaded the creation of a Cruise Ship Task Force formed to encourage the cruise ship industry to use Tampa as a passenger port. Within a short time, the Port of Tampa was the fastest growing cruise ship port in the country. On November 1, 2011, Sharp celebrated his 50th anniversary with AAA Auto Club Group. Under his leadership that company serves more than 3.1 million members in the State of Florida alone and millions more who visit the Sunshine State annually. His commitment to tourism is personal and as an alumnus and former trustee of Florida Southern College, he and his wife, Peggy, contributed a gift to name the Frank Lloyd Wright-design Tourism and Education Center now under construction at FSC’s Lakeland campus.

Flagler Awards

Named for Henry Flagler, the Flagler Awards were established in 2000 to recognize outstanding tourism marketing in Florida. Annually, the Flagler Awards honor many of the countless individuals and organizations that help maintain and improve Florida’s position as one of the world’s most popular travel destinations. The awards are open to all individuals, private businesses and not-for-profit organizations offering a product or service that promotes tourism to or within the state of Florida.

Working independently, a panel of five judges evaluated the creativity, innovation, production quality and effectiveness of each entry. Based on the judges’ cumulative scores, awards were presented to the top three entries in each category: the Bronze Award for the third highest scoring entry, the Silver Award for the second highest scoring entry, and for the highest scoring entry in each category, the Henry Award. The 2012 Flagler Award winners in 17 categories, plus Best in Show at three budget levels, are listed below.

Web Sites

Bronze Award: Visit Orlando – 2011 VisitOrlando.com Re-Launch

Silver Award: The Florida Keys & Key West – fla-keys.com

The Henry: Visit Sarasota – Visit Sarasota Web Site Redesign & Re-architecture

Creativity in Public Relations

Bronze Award: Panama City Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau – “Attract Ambassadors to Ensure Successful Season???

Bronze Award: Visit Orlando – 2011 Vacation Makeover

Silver Award: Visit Pensacola – “Pensacola Celebrity Chefs Take Gulf Coast Seafood to the Big Apple???

The Henry: Seminole County Convention and Visitors Bureau – “Something Wild Inside Seminole County???

Direct Marketing

Bronze Award: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – “Lauderdale Spa Chic”

Silver Award: Perdido Key Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center – Autumn Breezes E-blast

The Henry: The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel – “Mobile Trigger Welcome Email???

Internet Advertising

Bronze Award: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – “Greater Fort Lauderdale Super Summer Online???

Silver Award: The Florida Keys & Key West – “Weather Ads???

The Henry: Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades Convention & Visitors Bureau – “Paradise Coast Orbitz Winter Campaign”

Mixed Media Campaign

Bronze Award: The Florida Orchestra – Florida Orchestra Campaign

Silver Award: Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex – “Sci-Fi Summer???

The Henry: Jacksonville Zoo – DinoAlive!

Mixed Media Campaign – DMO

Bronze Award: Visit Orlando – 2011 Second Summer Campaign

Silver Award: Visit Orlando – 2011 Canadian Broadcast Initiative

The Henry: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – Defrost Your Swimsuit in Greater Fort Lauderdale

Social Media Marketing

Bronze Award: Perdido Key Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center – “I Love Perdido Key Facebook???

Silver Award: Visit Sarasota – “Searching for Sara??? Facebook Campaign

The Henry: Palm Beach County Convention and Visitors Bureau – “Lilly Lovers Campaign???

Mobile Marketing

Bronze Award: Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades Convention & Visitors Bureau – New York City Mobile Campaign

Silver Award: Visit Sarasota – Visit Sarasota iPhone App

The Henry: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – Sunny.org Mobile Site

Niche Marketing

Bronze Award: Visit Orlando – 2011 African American Destination Video

Silver Award: Visit South Walton – “Wedding Ad???

The Henry: The Florida Keys & Key West – “Out Before It Was In???

Out-of-Home

Bronze Award: Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg – Museum of Fine Arts Poster Campaign

Silver Award: Visit St. Petersburg/Clearwater – “New York Winter Blitz Campaign???

The Henry: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – Defrost Your Swimsuit Digital Billboards

Print Advertising

Bronze Award: Visit St. Petersburg/Clearwater – “Every Day is Sun Day??? Ad Campaign

Silver Award: The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel – Journal Campaign

The Henry: Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex – “Sci-Fi Summer”

Radio Advertising

Bronze Award: The Florida Keys & Key West – Key West Summer Radio & Islamorada Summer Radio

Silver Award: Visit South Walton – “Definitions???

The Henry: The Florida Aquarium – “Five Inches from 500 Teeth???

Resource/Promotional Material – Consumer

Bronze Award: Visit South Walton – South Walton Visitor Guide

Silver Award: Gulf County Tourist Development Council – Gulf County Discovery Guide

The Henry: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – Cruise and Play Video

Resource/Promotional Material – Trade

Bronze Award: The Peabody Orlando – Peabody Orlando Sales Brochure

Silver Award: Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades Convention & Visitors Bureau – Power of Paradise Meeting Planner Gift

The Henry: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – SUNconventional Meetings Guide

Special Event

Bronze Award: World Golf Hall of Fame & Museum – 2011 World Golf Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

Silver Award: The Mahaffey Theater – “The Mahaffey – Grand Opening Weekend???

The Henry: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – Defrost Your Swimsuit in Greater Fort Lauderdale

Television Advertising

Bronze Award: Visit South Walton – “The Things You Take???

Bronze Award: Space Coast Office of Tourism – “Florida’s Space Coast – Looking for a vacation with the right stuff????

Silver Award: The Florida Keys & Key West – “Basics???

The Henry: Visit St. Petersburg/Clearwater – “Promises & Play??? TV Campaign

Tourism Advocacy

Bronze Award: Central Florida Visitors & Convention Bureau – “Lighting the Way to LEGOLAND???

Silver Award: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – “Who Knew Stimulating the Economy Could Be So Much Fun????

The Henry: Gulf County Tourist Development Council – Gulf Coast Tourism EXPO

Best of Show in three budget categories

Marketing Budgets under $100,000: Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg – Museum of Fine Arts Poster Campaign

Marketing Budgets $100,000 to $1 million: Amelia Island Convention & Visitors Bureau – Amelia Island Visitor Guide

Marketing Budgets Over $1 million: Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau – Defrost Your Swimsuit in Greater Fort Lauderdale

Iris D. Larson Awards

Created by Bob and Iris Larson, past owners of a small motel in Kissimmee, Florida, the Iris D. Larson Awards were created to recognize hospitality and tourism industry professionals and students who exemplify the qualities of selfless spirit of service and leadership in their work experience.

Hospitality Endowment’s Industry Service Award Winner

Michael Flowers, Jr.

Mr. Flowers earned an Associate of Arts degree from St. Petersburg College and is currently enrolled at the University of South Florida where he plans to earn his Bachelor of Science degree in Business. While he is the last person to seek out personal recognition, he is also the first person to step up when his efforts are needed to improve the resort or a guest’s experience. He displays a true spirit of hospitality and is an outstanding example to his family and co-workers. He was nominated for the award by the General Manager of the Bilmar Beach Resort where he is employed.

Scholarship Award Winners

Jordan Grant, Senior, Hospitality Management, Florida State University

Mr. Grant’s philosophy is that the harder you work for something, the more you receive in return and he feels that acknowledging everyone with a smile and “how are you???? makes our vacationers lives a little easier and more relaxed.

Andrea Temkin, Senior, Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida

Ms. Temkin believes that guests should be made to feel at ease and at home by going above and beyond, in overcoming language barriers, understanding cultural differences and focusing on what we can do for each of our guests. She also says that when we listen, analyze, assist our team members and allow our team members to assist us, we will always find solutions.

David Maggard, Senior, Hospitality and Tourism Management, Florida International University

Mr. Maggard is interested in the evolution of technology being used in the hotel industry to improve cost efficiency and has been studying sustainability and environmental management practices. He plans to further his education by entering a master’s program in finance.

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For additional information, contact Kathy Torian at ktorian@VISITFLORIDA.org

or (850) 205-3865.

As the Sunshine State’s No. 1 industry, tourism was responsible for welcoming 87.3 million visitors in 2011 who spent $67.2 billion, generating 23 percent of the state’s sales tax revenue and employing more than 1 million Floridians. For every $1 spent on tourism marketing, VISIT FLORIDA – the state’s official tourism marketing corporation – generates more than $258 in tourism spending and $15 in new sales tax collections, paid by visitors, not residents. VISIT FLORIDA promotes tourism to Florida through sales, advertising, promotions, public relations and visitor services programs. As a public/private partnership, VISIT FLORIDA serves nearly 12,000 tourism industry businesses, including 2,700 invested Partners, 8,900 web affiliates and major strategic alliance partnerships with Disney Destinations, Dollar Rent A Car, The Hertz Corporation, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment and Universal Orlando. To learn more about VISIT FLORIDA, please go to www.VISITFLORIDA.org or follow our corporate blog at www.SunshineMatters.org.

Source: Visit Florida

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