In it to win it in  September 7-9, 2016

Take your game to the next level and be “In it to Win It” with STS in Birmingham where you will enjoy unique learning and career building opportunities that you just can’t find anywhere else.  Connecting with travel & tourism professionals from around the southeast is inspiring and we all know there’s nothing like being in a room of like-minded people! 

Join us this September as we hear from Birmingham’s own with our special guest Phyllis Hoffman DePiano, CEO, Hoffman Media, an inspiring entrepreneur and founder of a great media company that is truly engaged with our industry. Also on your radar should be Chief Instigator and truth explorer, Bill GeistDMOproZ, and his take on the new, broader imperative for DMOs and the challenges they face; and Dr. Peter Tarlow, PH.D, Tourism & More who will address the  very timely issue of tourism being one of terrorism’s principal targets. Newly appointed National Tourism Program Manager for the National Park Service Donald Leadbetter, will also present as the NPS moves into it's 2nd Centennial.

Be on hand as we recognize Shining Example winners selected for outstanding contributions in tourism in the southeast United States and we celebrate together  the evening of September 8, 2016!  

Why? Staying Connected With Industry Professionals & Peers Where? Sheraton Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama
When? September 7-9, 2016
Presented by:


* Reach tourism professionals with 3 hours of quality time
* Show your latest innovations, new services you have to offer
* Give potential clients a reason to consider your service
* STS delivers quality delegates, prime potential customers
* Plenty of time to strengthen or create new relationships
* An affordable, effective conference for outreach

Tradeshow Details



Full Schedule (download HERE)       

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  • Phyllis Hoffman DePiano, CEO, Hoffman Media "Unexpected Turns" (BIO)
  • Bill GeistWe Plow The Road” the new, broader imperative for DMOs and the challenges they face. (BIO)
  • Dr. Peter Tarlow, PH.D, Tourism & More:  “Dealing with an Age of Violence” (BIO)
  • Donald Leadbetter, National Tourism Program Manager, NPS, “National Parks – America’s Special Places” (BIO)
  • Dr. Mark FaganThe Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail: Its History and Economic Impact”(BIO)
  • Valerie Luesse, Senior Travel Editor, Southern Living "It Still Comes Down to a Story"  (BIO)
  • Media Mania.  Hosted by Deborah Stone, Pineapple PR with panelists: Michiel Perry, Black southern Belle (BIO); Valerie Luesse, Southern Living (BIO); Brian Hoffman, Hoffman Media; Alex Merrill, Good Grit; Kevin Benefield, Southbound (BIO)


  • Breakout Sessions
    1. Sue Slocum: “The Intoxicated Traveler: a glimpse into craft beverage tourism" (BIO)
    2. Leon Maisel "SENIORS...who are they? How do we communicate to them? What motivates them?" (BIO)
    3. James Harenchar: "Big Data, Small Data... What does it mean and how can you use it?" (BIO)
  • Peer-Peer Discussions - Speak you mind in; six, 45-Minute round-table conversations
  1. Travel Marketing Professionals (TMP) Only; Hosted by Bill Geist
  2. Marketing; Hosted by Debbie Wilson
  3. Executive Directors / CEO; Hosted by Donna Carpenter
  4. Research; Hosted by Brian London
  5. Communications; Hosted by Laurie Rowe
  6. Events/Festivals