BATON ROUGE — The Louisiana Travel Promotion Association — which voted Jan. 23 to change its name to the Louisiana Travel Association — installed a group of tourism industry leaders as new officers for its executive committee and board of directors during the association’s annual membership meeting at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Lafayette.
From the Baton Rouge area, new officers installed on the executive board committee include Vice Chairwoman Janice Delerno Verges, of The Stockade Bed & Breakfast, and Treasurer Kerry Andersen, of Pinnacle Entertainment.
Joining the board of directors is Dustin Gontarski, of Compass Media, and returning to the board is Ralph Ney, of Marriott Hotel Baton Rouge.
From Ascension, Kevin Kelly, of Houmas House Plantation & Gardens, was named to the board of directors.
Also, the group holds an annual Louisiana Tourism Leadership Academy. The goal of the academy is to further educate those within the tourism industry by developing their leadership skills, strengthening their communication networks and informing them about the responsibilities of leadership in building and enriching their tourism-related organizations. Class of 2018 members will participate in six class sessions and tackle group projects throughout the year, while learning from the experiences of seasoned tourism professionals.
Baton Rouge-area graduates of the 2017 program include Barry Landry, of the Louisiana Office of Tourism; Joshua McNemar and Jessica Ragusa, of the Lieutenant Governor's Office; and Madeline Sanchez, of the Louisiana Travel Association.
Baton Rouge-area members of the 2018 class include Bryce Benzine and Jasmine Tregre, of the Lieutenant Governor's Office; Angie Burley, of the Louisiana Travel Association; Carrie DeVries, of Deveney; Rosie Lawler, Marshall Thompson and Charlie Whinham, of the Louisiana Office of Tourism; Fran McManus, of Miles Partnership; and Ramona Tauzin, of Red Carpet Destinations
Alvon Brumfield, of Louisiana Renaissance Festival, was a 2017 graduate.
Emily Matise, of the Tangipahoa Parish Convention and Visitors Bureau, is part of the 2018 class.