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CFHLA PAC and PC Board of Directors congratulate election night winners in the City of Orlando races, and Florida House District 35 primary race

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ORLANDO, Fla. – Today, the Central Florida Hotel and Lodging Association (CFHLA) PAC and PC Board of Directors congratulated the winners of the City of Orlando races, as well as the primary election winner of the open Florida House of Representatives, District 35.

This includes City of Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer; Tony Ortiz, City Commissioner, District 2 (unopposed); Patty Sheehan, City Commissioner, District 4; Bakari F. Burns, City Commissioner, District 6; and Erika Booth (R), Florida House of Representatives, District 35.

Each of the winners were endorsed by the CFHLA PAC and PC.

“CFHLA PAC and PC would like to congratulate all of our endorsed candidates, who truly understand the importance of tourism and the positive impacts it has on our community,” said Jay Leonard, General Manager of the Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs Resort Area, and the Chairman of the CFHLA PAC and PC. “We targeted these elections as the top races for the hospitality industry and we look forward to working with each of these pro-hospitality champions, as we ensure that our region remains the best place to work, play, live and visit.”

Robert Agrusa, President and CEO of the Central Florida Hotel and Lodging Association went on to say, “CFHLA looks forward to working with Mayor Dyer and the rest of the Orlando City Commission, as we advance policies that will continue to provide a positive economic impact and support for the employees of the hospitality industry, as well as the entire Central Florida region. Additionally, each of these leaders are willing to face the challenges confronting our community and are focused on providing transportation and workforce housing solutions that will improve the quality of life for all residents of our community.”

Currently a member of the Osceola County School Board, Ms. Booth has now advanced to the General Election that will be held on Tuesday, January 16, 2024.

The Central Florida Hotel and Lodging Association’s mission is to represent the Central Florida Hospitality Industry, by setting the standard of excellence through advocacy, collaboration, education, recognition, and service. As the largest regional lodging association in the United States, CFHLA represents approximately 80 percent of the more than 129,500 hotel rooms in Orange, Seminole and Osceola counties, and more than 500 “supplier” organizations that do business with the hospitality and tourism industries.

Travel and Tourism

Brightline, Central and South Florida Leaders Welcomes Tampa Delegation To Ride Florida System From Miami To Orlando

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Orlando, Fla. – Today Brightline welcomed Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, members of the Tampa Bay Partnership and Tampa and Hillsborough County elected officials and business leaders onboard to experience the new connection from South Florida to Orlando and explore future options for the Tampa extension.

The group of nearly 50 was greeted at the Miami Airport by Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava before joining Brightline leadership for breakfast at MiamiCentral. The delegation traveled from Brightline MiamiCentral to West Palm Beach, where they were met by City of West Palm Beach Mayor Keith James. Mayor James provided an overview on the development seen by the City since the introduction of Brightline. The group toured the Brightline station, which is expected to be similar in scope to a future Tampa station.

The group made their final stop, arriving to the Orlando station just after 3 o’clock in the afternoon where they were welcomed by Kevin Thibault, Executive Director and CEO, Greater Orlando Aviation Authority, Jim Gray, Orlando City Commissioner, as well as representatives from Congressman Darren Soto and Representative Rita Harris’ offices, community leaders and Brightline staff.

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Travel and Tourism

GMCVB Names Karla Grant, Geraldo Guillen To Leadership Team

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Credit: Shutterstock / GMCVB

MIAMI, Fla. ─ The Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (GMCVB), Miami-Dade County’s official destination marketing organization, has named Karla Grant director of human resources and Geraldo Guillen director of finance.

With more than a decade of management experience in a variety of industries, including hospitality, retail and tech, Grant is a seasoned human resources professional with an emphasis on automation, building and developing high-performing teams with a focus on creating positive and inclusive workplaces, reflecting the GMCVB’s core values. A graduate of Florida International University with a bachelor’s degree in human resource management, Grant is also a Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Certified Professional and accredited in hospitality and tourism management from Florida Atlantic University.

Guillen’s more than 15 years in financial management includes non-profits, government agencies and private industry organizations. His expertise in implementing major enterprise resource planning and customer relationship management systems, alongside a background in process automation, brings a new dimension to organizational financial operations. Guillen is a graduate of the University of Puerto Rico UPR, with a bachelor’s in business administration and a concentration in finance. He earned his MBA from The Inter-American University of Puerto Rico.

“Karla and Geraldo bring invaluable expertise that continues to enhance the strengths of our management team,” said President & CEO of the GMCVB David Whitaker. “Their extensive experience and passion for their respective fields enhances our capabilities and reinforces our commitment to our employees and stakeholders.”

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Travel and Tourism

2023 USA Down Syndrome Swimming National Training Camp hosted by Rosen Aquatic & Fitness Center

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ORLANDO, FL – Top athletes from around the nation are gathering at the Rosen Aquatic & Fitness Center (RAFC) this week to participate in the 2023 USA Down Syndrome Swimming (USADSS) National Training Camp. This training is designed for competitive and artistic swimmers who have Down Syndrome and will focus on team building, nutrition, dry-land training, sportsmanship, independence, and the mechanics of swimming. The session runs from October 18-21, 2023.

The primary goal of the camp is to motivate athletes with Down Syndrome, or “T21 Swim Warriors,” to prioritize swimming and healthy living in their lives. Additionally, coaches will select the USA Down Syndrome Swimming National Team to compete at the 11th World Down Syndrome Swimming & Artistic Championships in Turkey in March 2024.

“At Rosen, it’s important for us to provide safe spaces and facilities to communities that may not have those resources readily available to them,” said Michael Miller, executive director at RAFC. “We take immense pride in hosting the USADSS camp this year, especially during such a special time as Down Syndrome Awareness Month. Our mission is to provide these exceptional athletes with the opportunities they truly deserve, fostering their dreams and aspirations.”

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