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Experience GR Recognitions

Experience Grand Rapids Earn Acclaim!

Here’s just a sampling of recent honors earned by the official Destination Marketing Organization for Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Destination Partner of the Year

Helms-Briscoe 2019 – Secondary Markets
International meetings procurement company Helms-Briscoe honored us for “outstanding service” and an “engaged and collaborative partnership.”

ASAE Best in Show

The American Society of Association Executives awarded us with first-place Best in Show honors for our presence at the organization’s annual meeting and trade show in both 2018 and 2019.

PRoof Awards

Gold Awards for Best App (Beer City Brewsader®), Best Integrated Communications (Cocktail Week GR) and Best Brochure (2017 Visitors Guide) are among the honors bestowed by the West Michigan Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America in 2018 and 2019.

FoodTrekking Award

The World Food Travel Association named Grand Rapids the world’s #2 Food/Beverage Destination in 2017 on the strength of our marketing efforts.

AVA Digital Awards

We won Gold Awards for Best Editing (Beer City Brewsader Video) and Best Videography (Fambition Family Vacations Video) at this international competition in 2017.

Excel Awards

Our “Frederik Meijer Gardens: A Grand Rapids Treasure” and “Grand Rapids Glossary: Terms to Travel By” videos were honored by Association Media & Publishing in 2016-2017.

MarCom Award

The Association of Marketing & Communication Professionals recognized our Brewsader Passport with a 2016 Gold MarCom Award in the category of Promotion/Marketing Materials.

Website Awards

Our 2015 ExperienceGR.com website redesign earned a number of international honors, including an Adrian Award from The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International, a Gold MarCom Award from the Association of Marketing & Communication Professionals, and a Best Travel Website WebAward from the Web Marketing Association. It also earned a Diamond Award from the Michigan Society of Association Executives.

Individual Awards

Experience Grand Rapids staffers continue to win recognition for their talents and expertise. Recent honorees include:

Doug Small, President & CEO
Named one of the “200 Most Powerful Business Leaders in West Michigan” by the Grand Rapids Business Journal and inducted into the Michigan Society of Association Executives Hall of Fame.

Mary Manier, Director of Sales
Connect Association, a valued resource for organizers of specialty meetings and events, named Mary to its inaugural “15 Over 50” Class in 2019.

Stephanie (Kotschevar) Bradley, Public Relations Manager
Hailed as “2018 PR Newcomer of the Year” by the West Michigan Public Relations Society of America.

Angela Nelson, VP – Multicultural Business Development
Listed as one of the “50 Most Influential in West Michigan in 2018” by the Grand Rapids Business Journal.

Dave Nitkiewicz, Specialty Markets Sales Manager
Named one of the “Top 5 Young Professionals of 2017” by the National Tour Association.

Kate Lieto, Director of Marketing
Inducted into the “30 Under 30” Class of 2017 by Destination Marketing Association International.