EDI Case Study: Louisville Tourism
Louisville Tourism’s multi-pronged approach to establishing an equitable, diversified, and inclusive environment began with an internal audit of its own organization. The process focused not only on staffing and organizational culture, but also how diversity was represented in its destination marketing materials. The intent was to ensure its “own house is in order” before fully and authentically promoting Louisville as welcome and inclusive.
Its Black Tourism Advisory Council is comprised of African American community members who represent the destination’s hospitality industry. Without fostering real community engagement, the organization felt it would not be effective and transparent. The Council is essential in informing and advising Louisville Tourism’s work across a variety of disciplines, including marketing, B2B opportunities and product development.
To ensure the organization is meeting the promise and practice it shares in marketing Louisville as welcome and inclusive to its consumers, the team provides quarterly DEI training to the destination’s hospitality workforce.
In early 2021, Louisville Tourism announced new programming for the spring season featuring the destination’s African American history, heritage and culture. The goal is to grow African American leisure visitation to Louisville beyond the current 11%.
"To be a leading destination in today’s world requires CVBs to help set the tone for the cities they work to promote. And part of a strong brand is representing the many voices that make up a destination. By intentionally seeking and representing more voices, cities like Louisville will be able to attract more diverse audiences now and in the future."
Cleo Battle, CTA, CDME
President & CEO