Dow announces he will be leaving the US Travel Association in July 2022: Travel Weekly
Roger Dow, who as CEO of US Travel oversaw the conversion of a lukewarm industry association into a lobbying powerhouse, announced he would step down in July 2022.
Dow will be remembered for competing in a fractional group of travel industries with competing interests – hotels, cruise lines, destinations, airlines, airports, theme parks, tour operators, car rental companies, payment systems, middlemen – into a unified organization that sets aside their differences to align behind the common goal of increasing travel to and within the United States
Together with Loews Hotel President Jonathan Tisch, Dow helped organize the merger of the former US Travel Industry Association and Tisch’s Travel Business Roundtable to create US Travel in 2008.
That year, the meetings and hospitality industry faced the twin challenges of a recession and criticism from elected officials, including President Obama, for hosting meetings at luxury properties during the downturn. economic downturn. In coalition with other industry groups, the Meetings Mean Business initiative was launched, helping to stem the threat at a particularly difficult time. Dow recalls this period as the period of “maturity” of the association.
Another of the major achievements of the organization under Dow’s leadership was the passage of the Travel Promotion Act, which led to the creation of Brand USA, which markets the country abroad.
The group also strongly advocated to increase the number of countries in the visa waiver program; 11 additional countries were admitted to the program while Dow was CEO.
More recently, US Travel has played an important role in ensuring that travel agencies are included in relief packages during the Covid crisis.
Dow, who prior to accepting the position at US Travel had been senior vice president of global and field sales for Marriott International, said he had an eye opener when he realized lobbying was only ‘another form of selling.
“It’s about saying, ‘This is important, and here’s why.’ This is what I have been doing all my life. “
Dow said that following his departure from US Travel, his intention is to remain in the industry in a role that continues to address what he sees as significant unresolved challenges.
US Travel National President Christine Duffy, President of Carnival Cruise Line, congratulated Dow and said she will appoint a search committee to identify the association’s next CEO.