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Visit Sarasota County Celebrates National Travel and Tourism Week and Names The 2024 Voice of Sarasota Tourism

The annual acknowledgment of National Travel and Tourism Week was celebrated in conjunction with the kick-off of Savor Sarasota Restaurant Week at The Bird Key Yacht on the evening of May 14th with great success. Visit Sarasota County’s fun and interactive event included trivia, a 360-degree photo booth, and several award winners. This year’s event saw the return of their esteemed award program henceforth called the Haley Hall of Fame Awards named after longtime former President and CEO of VSC, Virginia Haley. Over 150 members of the tourism industry attended, and the guests also tasted samples from eight different restaurants that will be participating in Savor Sarasota Restaurant Week this June.


Visit Sarasota County proudly awarded five Haley Hall of Fame Awards to members of the community who keep the tourism industry stimulated and moving forward around the county. Nomination submissions totaled over 80 deserving candidates. The winners of the awards are as follows: Front Line Excellence – Alexandra Norohna of The Longboat Key Club and Resort, Heart of the House Excellence – Laura Lowe of The Ritz-Carlton Sarasota, Volunteer Excellence – An Cantor of Big Cat Habitat, Management Excellence – Erin McLeod of Senior Friendship Centers, Rising Star – Kaitlyn Fusco of Mote Marine Laboratory.


The evening also included honoring the 2024 Voice of Sarasota Tourism, Jennifer O. Rominiecki, President and CEO of Marie Selby Botanical Gardens. Each year, this award is presented to an individual who has significantly enhanced Sarasota County as a tourism destination. Visit Sarasota County’s Board Chair and Sarasota Opera General Director Richard Russell presented Rominiecki with the award noting her immense contributions not only at Selby Gardens but throughout the county. She repositioned the gardens to be known as The Living Museum® and serves on the board of numerous entities throughout the entire state of Florida.


Visit Sarasota County would like to thank everyone who attended and again recognize the sponsors who helped make the experience one not to be missed. The sponsors for the celebration and kick off included Sarasota Bradenton International Airport, Herald Tribune Media Group, Miles Partnership, Tiger Lily Flowers, Kokomo Charters, and The Original Wolfies.

Photo: From left to right: Visit Sarasota County Board Chair and Sarasota Opera General Director Richard Russell, 2024 Voice of Sarasota award winner Jennifer Rominiecki, and President and CEO of Visit Sarasota County Erin Duggan


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