John Whittington accepting the CVB’s Pinnacle Award from Stephanie Hein, CVB Board Chair, and Tracy Kimberlin, CVB President.
The Springfield, Missouri, Convention & Visitors Bureau presented its annual Salute to Travel & Tourism Awards Feb. 21 at the White River Conference Center in Springfield. During the program, Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe delivered a state of the state’s tourism industry address. CVB staff also updated constituents on achievements in 2018 and plans for 2019 marketing programs promoting Springfield as a travel destination.
• John Whittington, owner of Springfield-based Whittington & Associates, received the CVB’s top award. The Pinnacle Award is presented to individuals who have been active in the travel industry for many years and have made substantial contributions to the betterment of the Springfield area’s travel industry.
• Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum & Aquarium received the Hospitality Award for an attraction, lodging facility or restaurant which demonstrates outstanding hospitality to the traveling public and exhibits a team spirit in promoting growth of Springfield area travel and tourism.
• The Diplomat Award for a government official, organization or employee who has provided significant support to the Springfield area travel industry went to Missouri Gov. Mike Parson.
• The Spotlight Award for an individual, business or organization not usually considered part of the travel and tourism industry for noteworthy contributions in advancing travel and tourism in the Springfield area was presented to Missouri State University.
• Mike Chrispyn, director of the National Street Rod Association, received the Ambassador Award, presented to individuals or organizations who generated significant economic impact for the area by working to encourage tourism or secure a major convention or event in Springfield.
• Dean Kroencke received the Volunteer of the Year Award.