Thursday, June 18th, 2015. Aaron Humes Reporting: Late executive member of the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) and chief executive officer of Belize Media Group (BMG), Peter Tonti, was remembered at today’s general meeting of the Association in Belize City, as the Association reported progress with its tasks assigned at the last meeting.
Tonti, who died suddenly in April, was officially remembered as a “giant” of a man who fell in love with Belize as a Peace Corps volunteer in the 1970’s. He had a long, strange journey, from the Reconstruction and Development Corporation (RECONDEV) in Belmopan to the IDB Local Civil Society Committee, CEO of Cahal Pech and of BMG at his passing.
The BTIA’s new executive was tasked with turning the organization around after some floundering in recent years. New President Osmany Salas re-emphasized the relationship between the BTIA and its destination chapters, some of which had gone dormant.
At its bi-annual general meeting in Belize City today, the organization was happy to report progress in this and many other areas, as Salas reported the re-starting of chapters from Corozal to Hopkins and Belmopan to San Pedro. The BTIA has committed an initial 10% of its revenue to assist destination chapters, with plans to increase this to 50% in the near future.
The BTIA also continues to work toward financial stability for itself and its chapters, a redefined relationship with the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) and other industry stakeholders, and a renewed emphasis on promoting Belize, especially through the revamped Destination Belize tourism magazine which will be available online and in print later this year. The BTIA has also welcomed a new executive director, John Burgos.
The next general meeting is scheduled for December of 2016.
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