April 11, 2011
For Immediate Release
Contact:  Lisa Lawton, Director of Community Relations
(541) 743-8762; (800) 547-5445;
Cell - (541) 206-2259

 Travel Lane County President Takes Top Honors At Governor's Conference

Eugene, Ore. - Travel Lane County's President and CEO, Kari Westlund, took home top honors at the Oregon Tourism & Hospitality Industry Achievement Awards ceremony last night in conjunction with this year's 2011 Oregon Governor's Conference on Tourism.

The award was presented by Travel Oregon CEO Todd Davidson before hundreds of industry colleagues and tourism representatives in town for the 27th annual tourism conference, which runs through Tuesday, April 12.

Westlund has served in the hospitality industry for 30 years. She has held many leadership positions including chair of the Oregon Tourism Commission, past president of the Western Association of Convention & Visitors Bureaus and past president of the Oregon Destination Marketing Organization. Locally, Westlund has served on a variety of committees including Eugene's Cultural Services Advisory Committee, the Lane Economic Committee, the Springfield Conference Center Consortium and is also current president of the Oregon Track Club. 

Westlund was also recognized for her work and vision to develop Travel Lane County's new Eugene, Cascades & Coast Adventure Center, which opened last year in Springfield to attract and inspire thousands of travelers and encourage them to explore the local region's diverse points of interests and attractions. Her key planning role for Eugene 08 and the upcoming Olympic Trials was also recognized.

The conference continues with an opening breakfast session today from 8:30 to 10:20 a.m., featuring Todd Davidson, who will talk about the state's tourism industry successes and the key initiatives in Oregon's 2011-13 Strategic Plan. Session tracks on tourism development, marketing, international/travel trade and leadership will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., with additional workshops continuing until 5:30 p.m. Delegates will move off site to enjoy an evening reception and gallery tour at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art at 6 p.m. tonight.

On Tuesday, April 12, from 8:30 to 9:50 a.m., special guest Helen Marano, the director of the U.S. Office of Travel and Tourism Industries of the U.S. Department of Commerce, will present the keynote address, featuring news about the ground breaking passage of the Travel Promotion Act.

For a complete conference details, visit For additional information, contact Travel Lane County at (541) 484-5307 or (800) 547-5445.