TOTA earns international tourism accreditation

TOTA earns international tourism accreditation from Destination Marketing Association International.

The Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association (TOTA) is gaining recognition on the international stage.

Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI), based in Washington, D.C., has accredited TOTA with its Destination Marketing Accreditation Program (DMAP).

The program includes 58 mandatory and 30 voluntary standards of excellence in operational areas such as governance, finance, human resources, technology, marketing, communications, brand management, destination development, research, innovation, and stakeholder relations.

“By applying for and receiving DMAP accreditation, TOTA has demonstrated a commitment to quality programs and services,” said James T. Wood, DMAP chair. “Earning DMAP accreditation tells the region that your DMO has attained a measure of excellence, assuring that their trust is well-placed and their business is in good hands.”

Added TOTA board chair Ingrid Jarrett: “This really recognizes the strong commitment to world-class excellence that TOTA has made over the past two years under the leadership of our CEO, Glenn Mandziuk. Tourism is poised to be the leading economic growth sector in the province, and this recognition of excellence at TOTA will help us to drive economic growth throughout the Thompson Okanagan.”

Mandziuk notes that the region’s $1.75 billion tourism industry is ready to move to a higher level of development and marketing in 2012. A new grassroots regional tourism strategy is set to launch this spring. The region’s tourism marketing will be guided by up-to-date research on travellers’ preferences through the Thompson Okanagan organization’s participation in the Canadian Tourism Commission’s Explorer Quotient program.

“We have come a long way in the past two years, putting in place all the elements we need in order to operate at the highest level and work with stakeholders and other partners to develop tourism in all parts of our region,” said Mandziuk.

“To get this kind of recognition at the international level is not easy. To have attained it is very exciting and gratifying, and it couldn’t have happened without the tremendous effort made by TOTA’s board and staff.”

TOTA represents more than 3,200 tourism stakeholder businesses and organizations throughout the Thompson Okanagan including hotels, resorts, wineries, ski resorts, golf courses, restaurants, and economic development agencies.

For additional information on DMAP, visit www.destinationmarketing.org.

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