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Mobile’s Hutchinson Wins Tourism Honor

  SALEM, Ohio — Visit Mobile president and CEO Al Hutchinson has been named Tourism Promoter of the Year by the Alabama Restaurant and Hospitality Alliance (ARHA).

ARHA held its annual Stars of the Industry Awards recently at the Renaissance Montgomery Hotel and Spa. The award for Tourism Promoter of the Year recognizes the industry professional that is the “best of the best” in Alabama’s lodging, tourism and restaurant industry.

“Al’s commitment to Mobile and his efforts in sharing the message about this great destination have been recognized by industry leaders throughout the state,” said Karen Atchison, Visit Mobile board chair. “We are incredibly fortunate to have him in Mobile.”

“I have enjoyed a long relationship with Al in the group travel industry and congratulate him on this award of recognition,” said Joe Cappuzzello, president of The Group Travel Family. “He has given of himself unselfishly to build tourism.”

ARHA represents more than 1,200 member properties and industry-related service organizations. The food service, hospitality and tourism industry is Alabama’s second-largest employer, making the ARHA members the cornerstone of the state’s economy.

Since Hutchinson took the helm in 2014, Visit Mobile has seen record visitor attendance, an increase in city lodging tax revenue generated by guests staying in area hotels, a large jump in visitor inquiries, an increase in hotel occupancy and the two busiest summers on record for conventions. The “Born to Celebrate” brand has been pushed out nationally through marketing efforts and has garnered local, regional and statewide awards. Under Hutchinson’s leadership, the momentum for Mobile’s tourism industry is stronger than ever as Visit Mobile continues to attract leisure tourists and conventions to the area.