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  • Huckelberry, County staffer honored with tourism awards

    Chuck receives awardThe Southern Arizona Attractions Alliance, at its 20th annual meeting Jan. 17, recognized Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry with the 2019 David J. Nivison Award for Excellence in Tourism. 

    Every year, the Alliance presents the award to individuals, companies, businesses, attractions and government agencies who have distinguished themselves by exhibiting unusual commitment, unwavering zeal, or uncommon success and whose efforts have left a lasting, positive impact on the tourism industry of Arizona, southern Arizona, and/or Tucson. 

    Huckelberry received this award in recognition of his support to improve Pima County tourism via the County’s Economic Development Plan, partnerships with leased properties and Southern Arizona Attractions, and through his efforts to renovate the Historic Pima County Courthouse and create a Regional Visitor Center. 

    “Chuck Huckelberry’s support, on behalf of Pima County, of the Southern Arizona Attraction Alliance, at its inception and throughout the past 20 years, is a major reason for the organization’s success," Laura Cortelyou, SAAA president, said. "Mr. Huckelberry recognizes the effective and wide-reaching economic stimuli that result from self-determined cooperative marketing efforts. SAAA has been, and always will be, a cooperative organization that partners with government programs, nonprofit, and for-profit organizations to drive visitation to our member organizations.”

    The David J. Nivison Award for Excellence in Tourism was established in 2005 by the Southern Arizona Attractions Alliance in memory of marketing colleague David J. Nivison, who died unexpectedly in early January 2004. During his dynamic and successful career, Nivison marketed top regional attractions Old Tucson Studios and Biosphere 2.

    Past recipients include Robert “Bob” Walkup, former mayor of Tucson, and Anne Maxon, Tucson Visitors Center; Robert “Bob” Shelton, former operator of Old Tucson; and Jack C. Camper, former president of the Tucson Metro Chamber of Commerce.

    Catherine StricklandThe event marked the 20th anniversary of the SAAA, prompting the original founders to award a few special “Founders Awards” to those who have had an impact on the organization and/or worked with the organization over the years. Catherine Strickland, marketing manager for the Pima County Attractions and Tourism Office, was one of the recipients.

    In addition to working for the County’s Attractions and Tourism Office since 2003, Strickland serves as the Alliance’s marketing committee chair and creative director.  

    “I’m really honored to be recognized by the SAAA with this award. It’s gratifying to know that marketing the attractions in Southern Arizona for so many years has made a difference,” Strickland said. 

    Top - County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry with the David J. Nivison Award
    Bottom - Catherine Strickland with Ed Harrow, one of the founding members of SAAA
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