Since 2001, the Florida Tourism Hall of Fame acknowledges contemporary and historic figures whose vision, creativity and drive have had a positive and significant impact on the development of Florida as a desirable visitor destination. One individual is chosen annually and announced during the Governor's Conference on Tourism. The award is presented on behalf of the VISIT FLORIDA Board of Directors. For more information, visit FloridaTourismHallofFame.org or contact Leslie Pearsall at 850-205-3865.
Nominations are closed.
The nomination period for the 2021 Florida Tourism Hall of Fame Award is closed. The 2021 Hall of Fame inductee will be announced at the Florida Governor’s Conference on Tourism in September. The next Hall of Fame nomination period will begin in spring 2022.
Inducted in 2021:
The 2021 Florida Tourism Hall of Fame inductee is William D. Talbert, III, CDME.
For more than three decades, Mr. Talbert has distinguished himself as a highly respected industry and community leader, serving as President and CEO of the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) for the past twenty years, and Chief Operating Officer for the prior nine. Throughout his tenure, the GMCVB has consistently posted record-breaking growth, helping welcome 29.4 million visitors in 2019 that generated an economic impact of nearly $18 billion and 146,800 jobs. Under his leadership, the GMCVB was awarded accreditation from the Destination Marketing Accreditation Program in 2007.
Other major accomplishments include assisting with the passage of the United States Travel Promotion Act and the Miami-Dade County Food & Beverage Tax, as well as preparing five successful Super Bowl bids, and four U.S. Travel Association Pow Wow bids. He also helped secure a $620 million renovation for the Miami Beach Convention Center, and the establishment of the the Black Hospitality Initiative of Greater Miami.
Mr. Talbert has served on the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Travel & Tourism Advisory Board, VISIT FLORIDA’s Executive Committee, Destination Marketing Association International’s Board of Trustees, the U.S. Travel Executive Committee, Brand USA Marketing Committee, the Florida Association of Destination Marketing Organizations, and Florida International University’s Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management Dean’s Advisory Council.
To aid in the tourism industry’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr. Talbert has also served on U.S. Commerce’s Travel & Tourism Advisory Board on Restoring Consumer Confidence, Miami-Dade County’s Economic Recovery Task Force, the City of Miami Beach Advisory Panel, City of Miami Recovery Group, and the Atlantic Intracoastal/Waterfront Recreation Access Steering Committee. He is also a board member of multiple Miami-based business and non-profit organizations.
Mr. Talbert holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from Florida Atlantic University and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Florida. In 2006, he earned the Certified Destination Management Executive designation. Mr. Talbert’s experience, expertise, and dedication have been essential to the success of Florida’s tourism industry, and the impact of his work continues to enrich the Sunshine State vacation experience today. Please join us in recognizing William Talbert, the 2021 inductee of the Florida Tourism Hall of Fame.