New York City’s Tourism Chief Appointed to 11-Member Board That Will Oversee Implementation of President’s Travel Promotion Act and Create First-Ever National Tourism Campaign

New York City (September 10, 2010)—U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke today announced NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta as one of President Obama’s appointments to the Corporation for Travel Promotion—an 11-seat board which will be tasked with creating the country’s first-ever national tourism campaign. Fertitta, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s hand-picked choice to lead the City’s marketing, tourism and partnership organization in 2006, will serve as the board’s only city destination; the board will be made up of leading national figures from numerous industries including the hotel, restaurant, retail, commuter and attractions sectors. New York City continues to see record-breaking visitation, an expansion in overseas market share to 33% and a greater international reach that now includes 18 offices serving 25 markets worldwide.

“I can think of no one more qualified than George to help spearhead the country’s first national tourism board,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “George’s accomplishments in tourism, as well as his impressive background in private sector marketing and advertising, make him immensely qualified to serve on the Board of the Corporation for Travel Promotion. As the head of the country’s top international travel destination and port of entry, he has the expertise and insight into international markets that will make him invaluable in planning and launching new campaigns and initiatives. Over the last four years, NYC & Company has accomplished great things for our City—and I know that our country would benefit from having the same skill and passion working to increase travel to the United States.”

“George Fertitta’s vision and expertise make him uniquely qualified to help launch the nation’s first-ever national tourism campaign,” said Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. “His well-deserved appointment is a win for New York and I am proud to have recommended him to this post. George’s leadership has been vital in boosting tourism to the Big Apple by promoting New York City around the world and he will be invaluable in helping the country’s long term growth.”

“I would like to thank President Obama and Secretary Locke for this extraordinary opportunity, and, of course, Mayor Bloomberg for his unwavering support over the years,” said Fertitta. “It is truly an honor to represent New York City and have the chance to work with the amazing collection of talent that will comprise the new board. Travel and tourism is incredibly important to our country’s economic well being supporting more than 8.2 million American jobs and pumping $1.3 trillion into the economy annually. To this end, the United States must do all it can to highlight our many destinations and welcome visitors from around the globe with open arms. The passage of the Travel Promotion Act is a great first step—one that could result in at least 256,000 annual new visitors to New York City alone—but we must continue the momentum and create a program that will have real, long-lasting impact.”

Signed in March 2010, the Travel Promotion Act is expected to generate approximately $4 billion in new visitor spending and create 40,000 new jobs annually. The landmark legislation will put in place a new public-private matching funds program featuring up to $100 million in private sector contributions and, potentially, $200 million overall. The bill establishes the Corporation for Travel Promotion—whose goal is to develop a multi-channel marketing and communications program to attract more international visitors—which will be comprised of representatives from various segments of the travel and business communities. The Congressional Budget Office estimates the overall program could reduce the federal budget deficit by $425 million over the next decade.

NYC & Company is the official marketing, tourism and partnership organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide. For all there is to do and see in New York City, visit

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