Press Release – NORWOOD, Mass—(March 6, 2018) Tourism Cares announced today that Paula Vlamings will be its new chief executive officer, effective immediately.
Vlamings has a rich background in successfully launching social impact initiatives in the travel industry. Tourism Cares Board Chairman Derek Hydon praised her as a dynamic leader who will guide the organization through the next phase of its mission to leverage the power of travel and tourism to help people and places thrive.
“This transition reflects both our strong growth over the last several years and our commitment to harness the power of change through travel,” Hydon said. “With new leadership and enhanced capacity in social enterprise development, we’ll deepen the impact of our initiatives and the value we provide our 200-plus members, our incredible partner network and the beneficiaries of our programs.”
Vlamings has deep experience overseeing relevant strategic planning and operations. She is the former executive director of the Planeterra Foundation with G Adventures and provided senior sustainability leadership to the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy’s Institute at the Golden Gate.
Her passion for travel included a recent two-year overland journey from San Francisco to Tierra del Fuego.
Vlamings will relocate to the Boston area to lead the staff from the organization’s headquarters in Norwood, Massachusetts. From there, she will also work with the board of directors and the Tourism Cares and travel industry community to harness the global network of individuals and companies committed to developing and executing tangible programs which collectively demonstrate that travel is a force for good in the world.
“Now more than ever, it’s vital that travel and tourism providers integrate more closely with community-based organizations and conservation initiatives to create opportunities for the people and the places our industry cares about, while working to help distribute tourism more sustainably,” said Vlamings. “More companies are building or rebuilding business models around social good, and these activities set them apart from competitors and contribute to their success. I’m thrilled to be part of an organization like Tourism Cares that’s so committed to using this massive industry to create positive change in the world.”
Previous CEO Mike Rea, will serve as an integral partner during the transition process to support Vlamings and the goals of Tourism Cares as senior program advisor. He will remain in Seattle focusing on building West Coast partnerships, program impact and strategy.
Last week, Vlamings joined the Tourism Cares with Jordan delegation of 70 senior travel industry representatives who explored that country, visited small social enterprises and launched the Meaningful Travel Map of Jordan. The map promotes a dozen social suppliers that apply the power of tourism to address pressing local issues and bring much needed income to communities.
About Tourism Cares: Tourism Cares, Inc., a US 501(c)(3) public charity, advances the travel industry’s social impact to help people and places thrive. We unite the industry to make a greater impact on shared priorities, and to help each company fulfill its giving goals. Our members include leading travel associations and companies, together helping destinations in need, supporting our workforce, and improving our corporate social responsibility. Learn more at www.TourismCares.org and @TourismCares.
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