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Reinert initiates working group to review Tourism Marketing RFP and city contract

Reinert. Howie /

By Kelli Latuska
Duluth Mayor Roger J. Reinert announced today the formation of a working group tasked with reviewing the Tourism Marketing Request for Proposal (RFP) and the marketing contract with the City of Duluth. The goal of this initiative is to ensure that the funds allocated for tourism marketing are effectively invested back into the city, maximizing benefits for Duluth businesses and residents.

Reinert named Karen Pionk, Sheraton Duluth Hotel general manager, to lead the working group.

“The Duluth tourism industry is a vital economic engine for our community,” said Pionk. “It attracts visitors from across the region and beyond to experience Duluth’s unique culture, natural beauty, and vibrant community.”

Reinert said this work is part of the city's ongoing efforts to promote sustainable economic development.

“I am prioritizing a comprehensive review of the tourism marketing strategy to ensure it aligns with the long-term goals and values of both the industry, and the City of Duluth,” said Reinert. "I am committed to ensuring that every dollar invested in tourism marketing contributes to the prosperity of our city and its residents. I am also committed to seeing tourism tax dollars generated in Duluth and intended to promote Duluth spent in Duluth on that promotion.”

“By convening this working group, we aim to evaluate our current marketing practices, identify areas for improvement, and develop strategies that will enhance the visibility and economic impact of Duluth as a premier tourist destination,” Reinert added.

The working group will consist of representatives from various stakeholders, including local businesses, tourism organizations, community leaders, and marketing experts. Together, they will assess the effectiveness of the existing marketing efforts, explore opportunities for collaboration and innovation, and recommend actionable strategies to optimize the use of tourism marketing funds.

"By harnessing the collective expertise and insights of our community, we can chart a course for tourism marketing that not only attracts visitors to Duluth but also enriches our local economy and enhances the quality of life for all residents," said Pionk.

The formation of the working group underscores the city's commitment to fostering transparent and inclusive governance, engaging stakeholders in decision-making processes, and promoting responsible stewardship of public resources.