The Visit Albuquerque (Visit Albuquerque) is pleased to recognize the Albuquerque 311 Citizen Contact Center team as the 2011 “Unsung Heroes of Tourism.”

Albuquerque’s “Unsung Heroes of Tourism” designation is an annual recognition to honor a local community group that has made significant contributions to the city’s tourism industry. This annual recognition takes place in conjunction with National Travel & Tourism Week, which is May 7–15, 2011.

The 311 Citizen Contact Center is a centralized call center for the City of Albuquerque, which answers questions and responds to service requests on a daily basis. Albuquerque’s 311 Team serves as a friendly, informative and knowledgeable base for locals and visitors alike. The office’s 56 employees received over 1.9 million calls last year alone. The contact center staff is being recognized as the 2011 “Unsung Heroes of Tourism” because while their primary role is not fielding visitor calls, they regularly assist travelers with a variety of requests.

“The 311 team is the face of the City and in many cases is the first and only impression visitors have of the City of Albuquerque. We are proud of the awesome customer service and the smile in the voices of our employees,” said Esther Tenenbaum, Division Manager of the 311 Team.

Visit Albuquerque began the National Travel & Tourism Week celebration with our Annual Luncheon on May 4th where a portion of the 311 team was recognized. The entire contact center team will be honored at a luncheon today, Thursday, May 14th from 11am-1pm at their offices.

“We appreciate what the 311 team does in combination with our Visitor Information Center team to provide a friendly voice for Albuquerque visitors. We thank the 311 Contact Center staff for their dedication to outstanding service while delivering accurate information to visitors and residents alike,” said Dale Lockett, Visit Albuquerque President/CEO.

Tourism is a $1.3 trillion industry in America and is Albuquerque’s second largest private industry generating more than $2 billion annually. Albuquerque is host to approximately 3 million visitors each year, producing over $30.7 million in local and state taxes. The Albuquerque hospitality industry supports nearly 25,000 jobs.

Past “Unsung Heroes of Tourism” include A.C.E. graduates and their employers, the ABQ Experts, Convention Center employees, local Solid Waste Management departments, Old Town merchants, Albuquerque museums, Balloon Fiesta volunteers, Downtown Action Team ambassadors, Albuquerque area hotel housekeepers, the Big I construction team and the Albuquerque International Sunport baggage handlers.