Ashley Johnson Receives Certified Destination Management Executive Designation

Lands in the Only Integrated Executive Program Designed for Destination Marketing Industry

Ashley Johnson, Director of Brand Marketing & Communications for Visit Laguna Beach has earned the Certified Destination Management Executive (CDME) designation, the only integrated executive program specifically designed for the Destination Marketing industry. The focus of the program is on vision, leadership, productivity and the implementation of business strategies.

A nine-year staff member with Visit Laguna Beach, Johnson is responsible for planning, development and implementation of all of the Organization's marketing strategies, support materials, marketing communications, product development, and public relations activities at the strategic and tactical levels. She also oversees the management of the operations of the Visit Laguna Beach administrative office and the Visitors Center.

Johnson was recognized for her CDME certification during the Destination Marketing Association International's (DMAI's) 2015 Annual Convention in Austin, Texas on July 15, 2015; 47 industry professionals from across the country earned this designation.

"To be recognized among the top destination marketing professionals in the U.S. is such an honor," said Ashley Johnson. "Completing the rigorous educational training affords me the opportunity to further Visit Laguna Beach's mission to promote our community regionally, nationally and globally with a deeper knowledge and in an elevated leadership role."

The CDME program is designed to better prepare senior destination marketing organization (DMO) executives and managers for increasing change and competition and to become more effective organizational and community leaders. Over the course of 22 years, more than 400 students have participated in the CDME program and this year the number of graduates will reach over 320.

"Our mission at DMAI is to advocate for the professionalism, effectiveness and significance of destination marketing organizations worldwide," said Michael Gehrisch, President & CEO of DMAI. "We realize the importance of destination marketing and are committed to improving the effectiveness of these organizations. These individuals who have achieved the CDME designation have set an example of excellence for the entire destination marketing profession."

About Visit Laguna Beach
Visit Laguna Beach (formerly Laguna Beach Visitors & Conference Bureau) is a 501 (c)(6) not-for-profit destination marketing organization that promotes Laguna Beach as a premier leisure and small meeting destination. Formed in 1986, Visit Laguna Beach is celebrating 29 years of commitment to Laguna Beach and the tourism industry, with its offices located at 361 Forest Avenue, Suite 200 and the Official Visitors Center at 381 Forest Ave. The Visitors Center is open daily, Monday - Sunday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Get social with Visit Laguna Beach on Facebook (LagunaBeachVisitorsBureau), Twitter (@VisitLaguna) and Instagram (@VisitLaguna).

About Destination Association Marketing International (DMAI)
Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) protects and advances the success of destination marketing worldwide. DMAI's influential membership includes nearly 600 destination marketing organizations (DMOs), from 16 countries, which command US $2.5+ billion in annual budgets. As the world's largest and most reliable resource for DMOs, DMAI provides nearly 4,000 individual members - professionals, industry partners, educators and students - the most innovative and relevant educational resources, networking opportunities and marketing intelligence worldwide. 

Media Contact:Lana Johnson, CTA
Visit Laguna Beach
(949) 212-1499