River Region Leaders Selected to Participate in Louisiana Tourism Leadership Academy

LAPLACE, La. – The Louisiana Travel Association (LTA) introduced Buddy Boe, executive director of the River Parishes Tourist Commission (RPTC), and Ethan Rodrigue, sales and gift shop manager at Laura Plantation as members of the Louisiana Tourism Leadership Academy (LTLA) class of 2019. The announcement was made during RPTC's annual membership meeting on Jan. 24 in Alexandria, Louisiana. Details were shared in a press release.

The goal of LTLA is to further educate those within the tourism industry by developing their leadership skills, strengthening their communication networks and informing them about the responsibilities of leadership in building and enriching their tourism-related organizations. Class members will participate in six class sessions and tackle group projects throughout the year, while learning from the experiences of seasoned tourism professionals.

Earlier this year, the RPTC implemented a tuition scholarship to the Louisiana Tourism Leadership Academy for one employee of a river region business in the hospitality and tourism industry. Rodrigue is the 2019 recipient.

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“I’m excited to participate with other tourism leaders in the Louisiana Tourism Leadership Academy,” said Rodrigue. “I look forward to learning from the group of established leaders in the tourism industry and using their expertise to better myself and organization.”

“It is such an honor to have the opportunity to work with this group of people all striving to improve the tourism industry in Louisiana. I am looking forward to learning from everyone and bringing new ideas and practices back to the RPTC,” said Boe.

The 2019 class of LTLA includes: Jerrica Bennett, Monroe-West Monroe CVB; Buddy Boe, River Parishes Tourist Commission; Alia Casborne, City of Mandeville; Kimberly Chauvin, David Chauvin’s Seafood Co.; Melissa Chiasson-Durocher, Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou; Matthew Cope, Louisiana Office of Tourism; Kylie Gravois, Tour Ascension; Serena Gray, Webster Parish CVB; Jessica Henry, Lafayette CVC; Phillip Lawrence, Bikila the Warrior; Jill Leo, Natchitoches Historic Business Association; Jennifer Mamon, Ruston Lincoln CVB; Colten Miller, Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana CVB; Lydia Mulero, BigEasy.com; Joni Pitre Duet, Houma Area CVB; William Precht, Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana CVB; Ethan Rodrigue, Laura Plantation; Ann Savage, Alexandria-Pineville Area CVB; Chelsey Sharplin, Holiday Inn Alexandria Downtown; Lauryn Sharplin, Holiday Inn Express Natchitoches; Katherine Simon Andry, Zehnder Communications; Bobbie Smith, Houma Area CVB; Carla Tate, Tangipahoa Parish CVB; and Anna White, Louisiana Travel Association.

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“LTA is proud to announce this group of 24 individuals who represent all areas of the state and all aspects of the tourism industry,” said Jill Kidder, LTA President and CEO. “We’re excited to see how the program will impact each of them both personally and professionally.”


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