ROGER Dow, President of the US Travel Association, is stepping down from his role after 17 years, but vows that he will remain in the travel industry in an as-yet-unannounced role related to tourism’s workforce challenges.
Dow, whose tenure has seen hugely successful lobbying on a range of issues including the creation and development of Brand USA, America’s national inbound tourism marketing organisation, became the organisation’s chief in 2005.
Repeated tributes during this week’s IPW in Orlando have highlighted his huge contribution, which also saw a special ‘Save Brand USA’ act passed by US Congress during the pandemic, which resulted in US$250 million in additional extraordinary funding to help keep the US on the radar of global travellers.
Dow (pictured) has also been credited with the expansion of the annual IPW trade show, which is estimated to generate as much as US$5.5 billion in additional economic activity – about 10% of which flows to the host city each time the event is held.
The US Travel Association has grown into a powerhouse of influence in Washington DC, tackling industry-wide issues at the highest levels of government including the current impasse on inbound testing and also the deeply flawed US visa application process (TD yesterday).