Wednesday, February 18, 2009

DMAI – AFTA Work Group

There is a memorable line in the Paul Newman movie Cool Hand Luke. Ranked the 11th best movie quote of all time, in a confrontation with prison authorities, his character calls out “what we have here is a failure to communicate.

Problems occasionally arise between DMO’s (destination marketing organizations) and stakeholders and partners when there isn’t a clear understanding of roles and expectations.

Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) has been reaching out to stakeholder counterparts to jointly shape white papers as tools that will give local DMO’s and various stakeholder groups a template for roles and expectations.

Maura Gast, my counterpart in Irving, TX and the current Chair of DMAI, asked me to reach out to a DMAI counterpart to form a joint work group that would tackle shaping a white paper on roles and expectations between Local DMO’s and cultural organizations.

And I’ve found the perfect partner to coordinate the cultural members of the work group, Mary Margaret Schoenfeld with the Americans For The Arts (AFTA). She heads up community development for AFTA and is responsible for building national partnerships and providing technical assistance and content resources for arts-based community and economic development. They also support and develop various councils and interest groups within the organization.

Mary Margaret spent a decade heading up a local arts council so she knows the terrain. She’ll coordinate involvement from the various segments including theaters, museums, etc. Helping us at DMAI will be VP of Membership, Karen Gonzalez.

This may take a year or more but it should be both fun and productive. And the endwork product will hopefully provide guidelines to inform and energize what DMO’s expect of cultural groups and what cultural groups should expect from a DMO.

Stay posted.

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