VISIT FLORIDA Board of Directors Appoints Dana Young as New President and CEO
January 07, 2019
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, VISIT FLORIDA announced the appointment of Dana Young as its new President and CEO. The announcement was made following a unanimous vote of the VISIT FLORIDA Board of Directors during a meeting this afternoon. Dana Young will assume her role as VISIT FLORIDA President and CEO on Wednesday, January 9.
Governor-elect Ron DeSantis said, “Dana Young is an exceptional leader who has worked tirelessly to improve the quality of life for all Floridians. Her leadership ability and experience make her an excellent candidate to lead VISIT FLORIDA in its mission to maximize the economic impact of travel and tourism to our state. I look forward to working with Dana, who will be the first woman to lead VISIT FLORIDA, to strengthen our tourism industry and build on the economic success of our great state.”
Young, a sixth-generation Floridian, is a product of the Florida public school system and received her undergraduate degree in Political Science from Florida State University. In pursuit of her interests in law and public policy, she graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1993 and returned to Florida to begin her legal career at Fowler, White, Boggs, P.A. Young served in the Florida House from 2010 to 2016, rising to House Republican Leader. Most recently, she served as a senator for District 18 in Hillsborough County.
Dana Young said, “I want to thank Governor-elect DeSantis and the VISIT FLORIDA Board of Directors for this opportunity to lead VISIT FLORIDA. As a Floridian, with a family tradition of public service, I understand the vital importance of tourism to our state and look forward to working with industry businesses to inspire travel to Florida, stimulate the economy and create more jobs.”
Lino Maldonado, Vice President of Operations, Growth, and Innovation for Wyndham Vacation Rentals North America and Chair of the VISIT FLORIDA Board of Directors, said, “The Florida tourism industry has achieved seven consecutive years of record visitation and visitor spending, and according on the latest economic impact study, Florida visitors spent $112 billion and supported 1.4 million Florida jobs. Dana Young is a strong leader who will continue to elevate VISIT FLORIDA’s efforts to strengthen our state’s share of the global travel market.”
Maryann Ferenc, President and CEO of Mise en Place and Immediate Past Chair of the VISIT FLORIDA Board of Directors, said, “As a fellow Tampa Bay resident, I welcome Dana Young to VISIT FLORIDA. Her experience as a legislator will prove valuable as we move through session and continue to share the value of VISIT FLORIDA. As the number one industry in the state, we take our role as a jobs creator seriously and appreciate the support of Governor-elect DeSantis in making this possible.”