Leaders in the travel industry meet in Washington to discuss current issues that are impacting the travel industry. Among them are the H1N1 flu epidemic, how to prepare for it, as well as ways to invite more international visitors in the country.
The gathering was one more piece of the Congressional Travel and Tourism Caucus’ continuing breakfast series, and was chaired by Congressmen Sam Farr (D-CA).
Travel and tourism plays a critical role in America’s economical rebound efforts. The industry includes more that 7 million jobs and generates more than $770 billion in annual spending. When travel and tourism grows strong, more jobs are created. This means the country grows more economically sound. Making sure the country continues to be protected in spite of the millions of international visitors that come here annually was part of the meetings focus, as was ways to safely draw more international travels to the United States.
“We look forward to working with Secretary Napolitano and her colleagues to ensure the best possible decisions that meet our security needs while taking into account those of the travel community,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the United States Travel Association.
Janet Napolitano is the secretary of Homeland Security, and has shown great interest in working alongside the leaders of the travel industry to safely promote travel to the United States.
Travel leaders who attended the gathering include Congressional Travel and Tourism Caucus members Sam Furr, Roy Blunt (R-MO), Roger Dow, President and CEO of U.S. Travel Association, Simon Gros, Vice President of Travelport, Bill Hardman, President and CEO of Southeast Tourism Society, Patrick Madden, President of Sister Cities International and Jonas Neihardt, Senior Vice President of Hilton Hotels, Jonathan Tisch, Chairman and CEO of Loews Hotels and Chairman Emeritus, U.S. Travel Association, Emily Cassell, Director of Arlington Convention & Visitors Service, John Groundwater, Executive Director of Passenger Vessel Association, and John Meehan, Executive Vice President and COO of Air Transportation Association of America.