ALBUQUERQUE, NM (May 10, 2011) The Visit Albuquerque (Visit Albuquerque) and the Albuquerque tourism industry recognized the 2011 Visit Albuquerque Ambassadors at its annual luncheon on May 4th.

The annual ambassador recognition honors locals for their commitment to the Albuquerque tourism industry. The 2011 ambassadors helped bring meetings and conventions to the city, which will contribute more than $8.5 million in direct spending.  The 16th annual Visit Albuquerque Ambassadors are Sarah Holcomb, Benjamin Zimmerman, Rick Miller, Winston Brooks, Brenda Yager, Rich Ceronie, D'Nienne (Dee Dee) Hatch-Sanders, Vicki Clough, Marcel Lucero, Mike Tull and Jim Tilley.

  • Sarah Holcomb, Environmental Scientist and Benjamin Zimmerman, Pollution Prevention Specialist worked together in bringing the 2012 Annual Region VI Pretreatment Association (RVIPA) Workshop to Albuquerque. RVIPA represents people of the USEPA region states whose profession involves working with Industrial Pretreatment. The 2012 Annual Region VI Pretreatment Association Workshop is July 29 – August 3, 2012 and will bring $135,090 of direct spending to Albuquerque.
  • Rick Miller of the USA Track & Field New Mexico served as co-meet director and played a prominent role in the production of the 2011 USA Masters Indoor Track & Field Championships. He was also involved in the bid preparation and presentation when this event was awarded to Albuquerque in 2009. This event brought $371,500 to Albuquerque in direct spending.
  • Winston Brooks, Superintendent for Albuquerque Public Schools and Brenda Yager, Executive Director of Board Services and Government Affairs for Albuquerque Public School presented a comprehensive bid package to bring the Council of Great City Schools 2013 Annual Fall Conference to Albuquerque. The conference will take place October 28 – November 4, 2013 and will bring a direct spending amount of $385,700 to Albuquerque.
  • Rich Ceronie was heavily involved in the meet production of the USA Indoor Track & Field Championships in 2011. He was a key element in all indoor meets hosted in Albuquerque from the University of New Mexico track meets to the Mountain West Conference Championship. The 2011 USA Indoor Track & Field Championships brought $522,200 in direct sending to Albuquerque.
  • DNienne (DeeDee) Hatch-Sanders encouraged her chapter (Iota Xi Omega) of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. to host their national convention in Albuquerque. She presented presentations at the Regional office in 2009 to win the conference in her hometown. The convention brought a direct spending amount of $669,200 to Albuquerque. 
  • Vicki Clough, Marcel Lucero and Mike Tull of Convention Services of the Southwest Inc. presented a comprehensive bid package to Community Transportation Association and succeeded in brining the 2013 Expo to Albuquerque May 31 – June 8, 2013. Through their strong commitment to their organization and to the city of Albuquerque the expo will generate direct spending of $2,059,700 to Albuquerque.
  • Jim Tilley, the Executive Director of New Mexico Youth Soccer, has been instrumental in securing soccer events to Albuquerque, including the 2010 US Youth Soccer Far West Regionals. The 2010 USYS Far West Regionals generated a direct spending amount of $4,350,000 for Albuquerque.

“Visit Albuquerque continually partners with locals and organizations across our community to seek out future business for the city.  We appreciate the 2011 Ambassadors’ efforts in bringing meetings and conventions to their city and playing a role in Albuquerque’s economic growth,” Dale Lockett, Visit Albuquerque President/CEO.

Travel and tourism is Albuquerque’s second largest private industry. Albuquerque welcomes approximately 3 million visitors annually, which generate more than $30.7 million in local taxes each year.  Meetings contribute $66 million each year in direct spending.  The hospitality industry also employs nearly 25,000 people in Albuquerque.