The last month has been a very full and busy one, and there are many things to celebrate. Before I mention all of these things, it is important to note that while the TRCVB plays a leadership role in these things, NONE of them can be accomplished alone. We need the partnership and leadership of our Board, our community, our members and our staff - only by collaborating and cooperating together can we achieve great things.

So, the list:

In March the TRCVB was granted DMO (Destination Marketing Organization) Accreditation. This is no small feat: only one other DMO in Washington (Spokane) is accredited and only 125 worldwide. This accreditation is recognized not just by our peers, but also by our customers, giving Tacoma + Pierce County a competitive edge in the meetings market.

Our Visitor Information Center Volunteer Team is receiving the ?City of Destiny? award in May. The annual City of Destiny awards event spotlights exceptional volunteers who have worked to drive Tacoma forward.

The TRCVB has played a leading role in the creation of the Washington Tourism Alliance, a new organization positioning itself to take the reins of statewide tourism marketing. With the closure of the State Tourism Office to take place July 1, it is imperative that the assets developed by the State be maintained, and that marketing and marketplace presence continues.

We have made the list of finalists for the Business Examiner's ?Top Places to Work.? Top Places to Work recognizes outstanding company cultures in the South Sound. Nominees are evaluated in five categories of Integrity, Gratification, Equity, Solidarity and Appreciation.

The TRCVB is implementing programs to bring more business opportunities to our community. In addition to putting together the winning bid for the 2012 State Republican Convention and 2012 MPI (Meeting Professionals International) Cascadia Conference, we expect many more announcements to come.

Finally, I was recently honored with the Popham Award from the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce. This award is for building community spirit. I want to share this award with our team. While I am honored to be recognized, none of these things are accomplished alone. We need each other? and this community already has spirit. I'm just lucky to be a part of it.

Our industry and community will continue to face challenges in many shapes and forms. Together we can continue to face these challenges, and turn lemons into lemonade.