In this time of global crisis and uncertainty, we put the call out to leaders, CEOs, strategists and consultants to sit down and tell us, in their own words, what is going on and what is going to happen next in this vital global industry.

As global destinations return to a much needed, very welcome but still very tentative reopening, a friend and accomplished industry peer recently shared with me this observation:

In a world where discussion around diversity, equity and inclusion has, for the past year, very necessarily and very appropriately focused on issues of race, it has been challenging to find the bandwidth for meaningful discussion of LGBTQ issues.

That challenge is now perhaps especially relevant for travel and tourism as both Skift and the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association project that LGBTQ travelers will likely be significant early adopters in the comebacks of both domestic and international travel.

So here are the questions: As we deal with becoming an equitable, diverse and inclusive world on so many fronts, what is authentic destination marketing? What is authentic LGBT&Q destination development? 

Both my guests today, LoAnn Halden and Greg DeShields, see the future of tourism as authentic, credible and inclusive, and both have dedicated their careers to bringing equity, diversity and inclusion to the travel industry.

Photo by Ian Taylor on Unsplash