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Wilson County tourism director resigns

The Wilson County Convention and Visitors Bureau announced Dec. 6 that Amy Nichols has officially resigned from her two-year post as Tourism Director effective Jan. 3, 2020.

In her statement, Nichols explained feelings about leaving and thoughts on the CVB’s direction.

Nichols has been acting Tourism Director for the last two years, and in that time has implemented a new branding for the department (Visit WilCo Tennessee), written and starred in GNHTA award winning marketing video series “WilCo on the Go”, received over $40,000 in grants, implemented a new website, blog and social media presence for the tourism department, developed a multi-year marketing and business development strategy, began the WilCo Hotel Forum, began re-branding and marketing efforts for the WilCo Pow Wow (formerly Mt. Juliet Pow Wow), brought in two major sporting events for 2020 (American Cornhole Organization), began the Paint WilCo mural initiative, and implemented multi-level and channel marketing strategies for tour operators, student travel, and the leisure travel market. During her tenure as director, Visitor Expenditure has risen over $10 million year over year, as well as an increase in hotel revenue by over $2.5 million.

A selection committee will be interviewing candidates to fill Nichols’ position in the coming weeks. In the interim period, Crystal Petet and Ashley Shores from the Wilson County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau will be maintaining the business of the Tourism Department until a suitable replacement can be found. Currently, Crystal Petet is the Administrative Assistant for the CVB leading the Paint WilCo mural initiatives and other special projects, and Ashley Shores is the Marketing Specialist focusing on digital and social media marketing.

“I have enjoyed my time as the Director of Tourism and have seen the department and tourism initiatives grow beyond my expectations,” said Nichols. “We expect continued growth in visitor expenditure and hotel tax revenue, and if I am able to leave with parting thoughts, they would be to remember the importance of finding ways to support tourism in the county. Without these valuable visitor dollars, stores, restaurants, and our hotels will feel the impact. In addition, these visitor expenditures generate tax dollars that can be used to help our growing communities, its infrastructure, its teachers and schools, and so many other valuable community assets that would otherwise require a property tax increase or sales tax increase in order to fund. Thank you to the Wilson County Commissioners, the team at the Wilson County CVB, and County Mayor Randall Hutto for understanding the importance of Tourism for our community, and for giving me the amazing opportunity to put the department on a path of growth and implement strategic initiatives that will help our community.”

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