Finger Lakes Visitor Connection’s Jessica VanDeMar Named One of 30 Future Leaders of

Destination Organization Industry


Canandaigua, NY – Finger Lakes Visitors Connection is thrilled to announce that Jessica VanDeMar has been named one of Destinations International’s 2024 30 Under 30 recipients.  


Jessica VanDeMar is Marketing Manager for Finger Lakes Visitors Connection, Ontario County’s official tourism promotion agency. She joined the team in 2022 as Destination Concierge – curating the experience of the visitors to our area. In 2023, Jessica’s role was advanced to marketing manager including new partner relations, promotional projects, the FLXperience passports, data resources and analysis, as well as overseeing Visitor Services. Jessica is a natural promoter of the Finger Lakes as she is a native, from Walworth, a graduate of the tourism studies program at Finger Lakes Community College. Ms. VanDeMar also holds a bachelor’s degree in tourism and recreation management from Niagara University.

Valerie Knoblauch, President and CEO commented, “it became clear early on that Jessica had not only passion for our industry, but also the innate ability to understand the traveling consumer’s motivations for selecting a destination, as well as an adept capacity to leverage all the promotional tools to get the information out and to maximize a positive experience in Ontario County and our region.”  Jessica has also been the leading tourism representative for the Solar Eclipse task force for Ontario County, as well as being the major force behind the organization’s Tourism Thursday program. Ms. Knoblauch added that achieving this recognition is no small achievement. This year’s honorees hail from 30 unique destinations across four countries and were selected from a competitive pool of 96 applicants.

Finger Lakes Visitors Connection and Destinations International are both committed to investing in preparing the leaders of tomorrow and developing future industry leaders that represent a diverse set of backgrounds and perspectives. Each year, 30 individuals under the age of 30 are selected to gain valuable industry networking opportunities and increased thought leadership throughout the year.


“The 30 Under 30 program remains critical to our organization’s vision and mission,” said Don Welsh, president and CEO of Destinations International. “As our industry moves toward recovery, we are especially excited to announce these young professionals as they are the future of the travel and tourism industry.”


The Destinations International Foundation believes it is important to empower future leaders,” said Ellie Westman Chin, CDME, president and CEO of Destination Madison and chair of the Destinations International Foundation. “We are thrilled to see the 30 Under 30 Program enter its 14th year, and we are thankful for the foundation investors who make programs like these possible for our industry through their contributions. We look forward to engaging with this group of emerging leaders through professional development, educational opportunities and networking with industry peers and leaders throughout the year and in the years to come.


“We are pleased to honor this year’s 30 Under 30 class of bright and talented young leaders,” said Mike Gamble, President and CEO of SearchWide Global. “Year after year, I am consistently impressed by the caliber of individuals we welcome into this program, representing destinations worldwide. We remain committed to helping our young leaders shape the future of our industry.”


The 2024 30 Under 30 Class Includes:

  • Alexandria Eady, Content Manager, Richmond Region Tourism
  • America Segura, Public Relations Manager, Visit Corpus Christi
  • Andrew Lawrence, Assistant Director, Arlington Sports Commission, Arlington Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Brittany Jones, Marketing Project Manager, Discover Durham
  • Caitlin Neal, Marketing Director, Gilmer Chamber/Pick Ellijay
  • Catherine Streater, Senior Coordinator, Brand USA
  • Cristina Fernandes, Leisure Sales Coordinator, Discover Puerto Rico
  • Fallon Tullier, Research and Technology Manager, Visit Baton Rouge
  • Hailey Post, Destination Data Manager, Visit Raleigh
  • Ian Wallis, Sales & Marketing Manager, Louisiana's Cajun Bayou Tourism
  • Jessica VanDeMar, Marketing Manager, Visit Finger Lakes
  • Kasmara Freiderich, National Sales Manager, Experience Rochester, MN
  • Katie Clarke, People and Culture Coordinator, Destination Vancouver
  • Lee Prutsman, Senior Marketing Manager, Visit KC
  • Luke Alexopoulos, Senior Public Relations Manager, Visit Eau Claire
  • Macy Dolton, Content Marketing Specialist, Destination DC
  • Maggie Carter, Creative Marketing Manager, Visit Baltimore
  • Martin Garneau , Senior Manager, Systems Architecture and Application Development, Banff & Lake Louise Tourism
  • Mary Coryell, Manager, Partner Relations, Discover Lehigh Valley
  • Megan Myers, Digital Media Director, Hocking Hills Tourism Association
  • Megane Simone, Bid & Communication Manager, Geneva Tourism & Conventions Foundation
  • Millie Stewart, Director of Sales, Visit Ogden
  • Nathaniel Sweetman, Sports Marketing Coordinator, Visit Sarasota County
  • Orla Moule, Business Events Assistants, Fáilte Ireland
  • Samantha Green Ewald, Destination Services Manager, Visit Charlotte/Charlotte Regional Visitor's Authority
  • Sheridan Powell, Communications Specialist, Visit Colorado Springs
  • Sydney Macapagal, Digital Content Strategist, Visit Galveston
  • Sydney O'Connell, Marketing Manager, Visit Fort Worth
  • Wayne Stewart, Director of Marketing & Communications, Visit Casper
  • Wesley Sosa, Graphic Designer and Brand Manager, Visit Stockton



Now in its 14th year, the 30 Under 30 program is supported by founding program partner, SearchWide Global and sponsored by Fired Up! Culture and IMEX. For more information on the 30 Under 30 Program and the 2024 30 Under 30 class, please visit



About the Destinations International Foundation:

Destinations International is the world’s largest and most reliable resource for destination organizations. In short - DI educates, equips, and empowers our members to grow the success of their destinations and to excel professionally. Membership grants access to a wealth of important industry resources, educational opportunities, and exclusive benefits. For more information, visit

About Destinations International:
Destinations International is the world’s largest resource for official destination organizations, convention and visitors bureaus (CVBs) and tourism boards. Destinations International is about serving destination marketing professionals first and foremost. Together with more than 6,500 members and partners from over 650 destinations in approximately 13 countries, Destinations International represents a powerful forward-thinking, collaborative association that exchanges bold ideas, connects innovative people and elevates tourism to its highest potential. For more information, visit




About Finger Lakes Visitor Connection


Finger Lakes Visitors Connection is the tourism promotion and management agency for Ontario County. Our mission is to curate, distinguish, and develop Ontario County’s destination brand to inspire travel that creates economic vitality for our stakeholders and communities, and provides quality of life benefits for our residents. More information is available at