GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The 2018 Pure Michigan Governor’s Conference on Tourism is taking place at the Amway Grand Plaza March 27-29. The conference features multiple events, speakers, sessions, and exhibitions that focus on diversity in the hospitality and tourism industry.

More than 20 industry leaders from around the state will share their vision for promoting Michigan’s tourism industry. During each session, attendees will learn about the secrets, skills, and attitudes needed to generate new opportunities in the tourism industry. Headlining the second day of the conference is keynote speaker Evita Robinson, founder of the Nomadness Travel Tribe.

Formed in September 2011, Nomadness Travel Tribe is an online community of over 19,000 influencers and innovators who represent historically marginalized demographics in the travel industry. The Tribe has accumulated more than 100,000 passport stamps from around the globe and has generated nearly $50 million in revenue for the travel industry annually. Their mission is to show the world that travel has no racial, gender, religious, economic, or interest limitations through community representation and relevancy.

“The Pure Michigan Governor’s Conference will deliver valuable insights to industry professionals about how to attract diverse groups from around the globe to our state,” said David Lorenz, Vice President of Travel Michigan. “Attendees will learn from colleagues, business owners and travelers how to make our state attractive and welcoming for all.”

Tourism is one of the state’s top industries alongside manufacturing and agriculture. According to a 2016 report from the Michigan Economic Development Center, the tourism industry was responsible for generating 337,490 jobs and $23.7 billion in spending from visitors, up 3% from the previous year.

“Experience Grand Rapids and Pure Michigan recognize the importance of attracting diverse conferences and visitors to the region,” said Angela Nelson, Vice President of Multicultural Business Development at Experience Grand Rapids. “It is a privilege to have Evita Robinson at the conference to share her insights on tourism and acceptance around the globe.”

A full list of scheduled events can be found on the conference website.

About Experience Grand Rapids

Established in 1927, Experience Grand Rapids (EXGR) leads the marketing of Grand Rapids/Kent County as a premier convention & visitor destination providing a significant positive impact to the West Michigan economy. Previously named the Grand Rapids/Kent County Convention & Visitors Bureau, EXGR represents the second largest city in Michigan with over one million residents.