Business News

Promotion of travel, tourism, and hospitality in California

Sonoma County, Calif. – Sonoma County Tourism’s (SCT) Business Development Coordinator, Kira Butz, is a recipient of this year’s CalTravel 30 & Under Emerging Leader Award.

The award recognizes individuals, 30 years old or under, who have contributed to the promotion of travel, tourism, and hospitality in California, while demonstrating the skills, attitudes, and initiative that are the hallmarks of emerging leaders.

“Kira has a been a tremendous asset to the business development team,” said Jonny Westom, Sonoma County Tourism’s Vice President, Business Development. “From her coordination of SCT’s successful Tasting Pass program to her oversight of tradeshow activities, photo and video shoots, and internal processes, she’s been simply remarkable. Kira has become the common thread that supports the business development department and keeps projects moving forward, and I’m delighted to see her recognized by her industry peers with this honor.”

Butz accepted the award on October 4 at the 39th annual CalTravel Summit at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa in Greater Palm Springs. The summit brings together travel, tourism, and hospitality professionals to discuss pressing advocacy issues, share ideas and insights, and build crucial relationships.

“It’s such a privilege to be named an emerging leader by the California Travel Association. My passion for travel, hospitality, and destination management drives me every day, and I look forward to ongoing professional growth in this dynamic and rewarding industry.”

Kira Butz

Butz, a southern California native, graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 2021 with a degree in Tourism, Hospitality, and Destination Management. While attending school, she worked at the Spyglass Inn in Pismo Beach and participated in a course driven marketing project for Visit San Luis Obispo. It was there that Butz was first introduced to the DMO industry and decided to pursue a career in destination marketing/management. After graduating, Butz moved to Sonoma County, where she served as Hospitality and Sales Coordinator for Martin Ray Winery in Santa Rosa before joining Sonoma County Tourism as its Business Development Coordinator.

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