CANANDAIGUA, NY – Finger Lakes Visitors Connection, the official tourism promotion agency for Ontario County, has hired Tracey Burkey as Director of Sales.
Burkey will oversee and facilitate all aspects of meeting and conference sales and services for Ontario County tourism. She holds the distinction of Certified Destination Management Executive (CDME), the travel industry's highest individual educational achievement.
Ontario County is poised to become a luxury meetings and conference destination in 2020 with the opening of two high-end properties including The Lake House on Canandaigua (formerly the Inn on the Lake) and The Canandaigua Finger Lakes Resort, along with a full rebranding and renovation of the Geneva Ramada Lakefront and the addition of the Pinnacle Athletic Campus in Victor. Additional facilities are also in the pipeline for Ontario County in a variety of states from concept to fully on board.
“Tracey has over 30 years of sales, meetings, and event planning experience and connections,” said Valerie Knoblauch, president and CEO of Finger Lakes Visitors Connection. “She understands the Finger Lakes Region inside and out. We are thrilled to have her join the Ontario County tourism team, and know her expertise, experience and warm demeanor will serve us all well as we enter into this meetings and conference space.”
The tourism bureau recently enlisted Destination Services, LLC, to conduct a survey with meeting and event planners, analyzing the meetings and events market. The research definitively indicated the meeting and event markets will generate significant economic impact for Ontario County, and that there is a very strong interest in bringing additional meetings and events to the area if there is a facility that meets their needs.
“Ontario County is already a premier leisure resort destination for visitors,” said Knoblauch. “This will expand our economic development opportunities into other markets and seasons.”
“The opportunity for growth in the meetings market is substantial, and I am thrilled to be a part of this initiative,” said Burkey. “I look forward to further establishing Ontario County as a viable location for the small to medium meetings business, as well as premiere events.”
Burkey was most recently manager of global accounts for HelmsBriscoe, the global leader in meetings procurement. Before that, she was convention sales manager, and then vice president of sales & services, for Visit Syracuse. She and her husband, Fred, have a combined family of five adult children and two grandchildren.