The American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association recently named Nevada native Sherry L. Rupert president of its executive board.
Rupert, Paiute and Washoe, is the executive director of the Nevada Indian Commission and is part of Governor Brian Sandoval’s (R-NV) cabinet. She previously served on AIANTA’s board as treasurer and vice president.
Governor Sandoval tweeted his support for Rupert earlier this month:
In 2013, Rupert was named to the U.S. Department of Commerce Travel and Tourism Advisory Board (TTAB). In her role at the Nevada Indian Commission, she established the Nevada Tribal Tourism conference, an annual event that brings essential training and industry information to Nevada’s tribal communities.
She believes that all tribes can benefit from tourism as part of their economic development.
“AIANTA understands that tourism is an economic engine for our Native nations,” Rupert said in a press release. “As president, I will push forward to ensure that AIANTA remains active in its work on the highest policy levels, in national and regional partnerships, and in offering the best tools and service to its members.”
Rupert, who succeeds Mary Jane Ferguson of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, helped develop the first American Indian cultural exhibit at the Reno-Tahoe International Airport.
And plans to work on several projects in her new role as president.
“One of our most exciting projects for 2014 is the development of a tribal destination website,” Rupert said in a news release. “The website will help U.S. tribes and native Alaskans and Hawaiians to reach a world-wide audience.”
AIANTA will expand its national and international outreach at ITB Berlin, the world’s largest travel tradeshow; at the U.S. Travel Association’s IPW tradeshow in Chicago; and at the American Indian Tourism Conference in Marksville, Louisiana.
AIANTA also announced that Rachel Moreno, Sitka Tribe of Alaska, will serve as the board’s vice-president and Aimee Awonohopay, St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin, was elected secretary.
AIANTA is a 501(c)(3) national nonprofit association of American Indian tribes that was incorporated in 2002 to advance Indian Country tourism. For more information visit: AIANTA.org.