Mary Hammond, executive director of the Paducah Convention & Visitors Bureau, recently received the highest honor given by Kentucky's travel industry.
Hammond was the recipient of the 2019 Mangeot-Oaken Distinguished Service Award at the Kentucky Travel Industry Association Annual Conference held last week in Covington.
It's named for Daniel Mangeot and Mary Ray Oaken, industry icons whose commitment and leadership set the stage and the example for tourism leaders who came after them.
"Mary Hammond is as unique and special as the community she promotes to the world," stated Hank Phillips, KTIA president/CEO, in a news release. "Her enthusiastic leadership and creativity over many years have put Paducah on the national and international travel destination map. The Mangeot-Oaken Award honors a career of achievement in Kentucky's tourism industry, and Mary exemplifies the very best of what the award represents."
She joins a long line of past recipients -- individuals who dedicated their professional careers to developing, promoting, and protecting Kentucky's tourism industry.
"Upon receiving this award, Mary proclaimed that tourism is not a job but rather a lifestyle," stated Vick Patel, chairman of the Paducah CVB Board of Directors. "In making the promotion of Paducah her life's work at the CVB, she has consistently displayed dedication, professionalism and creative vision to the benefit of the industry, the community and the region."
KTIA also recognized the Paducah CVB's destination marketing efforts with three 2019 Traverse Awards, a Silver Award for the Paducah.travel blog and Bronze Awards for Planner Services Cards (Meetings and Sports) and Strategic PR during Top Chef Kentucky.
Traverse Awards honor talent, creativity and effectiveness of marketing and public relations in the state's travel industry. Each entry is judged by an expert industry panel on its ability to capture attention, relate to the needs of the audience, differentiate the destination from its competition and sell the destination.
Paducah CVB is the official destination marketing organization for Paducah. It exists to create new economic opportunities through destination marketing, management and tourism development. For more information, visit www.Paducah.Travel.