FRLA Salutes New VISIT FLORIDA President and CEO

(Tallahassee, Fla.) – The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) applauds the selection of Ken Lawson as the new President and Chief Executive Officer of VISIT FLORIDA, the state’s official tourism marketing corporation. A native Floridian, Ken Lawson has served as Secretary of the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) since he was appointed by Governor Scott in March 2011. Previously Lawson held several senior positions with federal law enforcement agencies including Assistant Secretary of Enforcement for the Department of the Treasury, Assistant Chief Counsel for Field Operations at the Transportation Security Administration, and Assistant United States Attorney in the Criminal Division for the Middle District of Florida (Tampa). Lawson has also served as a Captain in the United States Marine Corps, Judge Advocate General’s Division. Additionally, Lawson directed international anti-money laundering, anticorruption, and counterterrorist financing projects for Booz Allen Hamilton and served as Vice-President for Compliance at nFinanSe Inc., a financial services company in Tampa. He is a graduate of Florida State University and the Florida State University College of Law.

“FRLA is extremely pleased with the selection of Ken Lawson as the new President and Chief Executive Officer of VISIT FLORIDA.  Lawson is an outstanding and respected leader and I am confident he will continue the momentum of VISIT FLORIDA’s marketing efforts. The success of our hotels, restaurants and attractions contributes to a stronger state economy and creates more opportunities for families and all Floridians. The overall economic vitality of the state relies heavily on the ability of VISIT FLORIDA to attract the millions of visitors who travel to enjoy the Sunshine State. The strength of Florida’s hospitality industry relies on the state remaining competitive as a global destination, we must unite together and collectively invest in VISIT FLORIDA’s marketing efforts,” said Carol Dover, President and CEO of FRLA and VISIT FLORIDA board member.

According to the EDR ROI study of VISIT FLORIDA, for every $1 the state invests in VISIT FLORIDA, the state sees a $3.20 return.