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Gov. O'Malley Names Chair of Maryland Tourism Development Board

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Governor Martin O’Malley announced on July 2, the appointment of Greg Shockley, owner/operator of Shenanigan’s Irish Pub and Restaurant in Ocean City, as chair of the Maryland Tourism Development Board. The 24-member Board provides oversight for the Maryland Office of Tourism Development, the tourism marketing arm of the State.

“ As a successful entrepreneur in one of Maryland’s largest tourist destinations, Greg understands the significant impact that tourism has on Maryland’s economy and on our quality of life,” said Governor O’Malley. “We are fortunate to have someone with Greg’s insights guiding our tourism efforts and continuing the growth of this $13.6 billion industry in Maryland.”

In addition to serving a three-year term on the Maryland Tourism Development Board, Shockley is president of the Ocean City Development Corporation; founding member of the Ocean City’s Boardwalk Development Association; past President of the Ocean City Hotel/Motel Restaurant Association; past board member of the Maryland Restaurant Association; and member of the BB&T Bank Regional Advisory Board.

“We’re delighted to have Greg chair the Maryland Tourism Board,” said Margot Amelia, executive director of the Maryland Office of Tourism Development. “His background and sound judgment bode well for our efforts to promote Maryland as a world-class destination.”

Additional changes to the tourism board include the appointment of John Fieseler, executive director of the Tourism Council of Frederick County, Inc. Dave Meloy, the previous chair and president of the Merit Hotel Group, will become the Board’s secretary/treasurer; Christopher Schardt, senior general manager for General Growth Properties, has been named Vice Chair, Retail; and Paul Bales, owner of Culinary Concepts, will replace Shockley as Vice Chair, Food Services.

The board is made up of leaders from hospitality-related industries – lodging, retail, transportation, food service and attractions – along with six members of Maryland’s General Assembly and representatives from the Maryland Association of Destination Marketing Organizations. It has broad policy powers authorized by the General Assembly to guide the direction of the Maryland Office of Tourism and its activities developing and marketing the State as a world-class destination.

Recently compiled data from the Tourism Office shows that Maryland welcomed more than 27 million visitors in 2007, which led to more than $13.6 billion in visitor spending -- up from $13.2 billion during the previous calendar year. Also in 2007, the Maryland tourism industry generated more than $1.7 billion in state and local taxes and provided more than 140,000 jobs to Maryland residents.

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