Our city’s national reputation is formed by a variety of things: a large monument on our riverfront, the fates of our sports teams, the sounds of the Symphony’s strings, our historic neighborhoods, the eccentricities of a sculptor on Washington Avenue, the amount of green space and trails, the concourses in the airport terminals, the clustering of some great doctors . . .
The task of spreading our reputation belongs to dozens of different groups and to all of us, but the task of managing our reputation in such a way that it turns into booked hotel rooms and crowded restaurants and attractions belongs specifically to the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission. They’ve had good successes and they work hard. But, because hospitality and tourism are such important parts our region’s economy, I’ve been asking them to do even more.
Everything I’ve read or heard about Kathleen “Kitty” Ratcliffe leads me to believe that the St. Louis CVC has chosen the right person as its new president. Kitty is one of her industry’s best known and mostly widely respected sales executives. Her relationships, credibility, reputation, and experience will allow the CVC to expand and increase its efforts to increase the number of conventions and association meetings it books that need America’s Center and all of the region’s hotel rooms, and to fill up more of downtown’s hotels, restaurants, and attractions more often with short-term meeting bookings.