Visit Fort Worth has announced a series of staff changes to support the new Destination Master Plan.
Mitch Whitten has been promoted to executive vice president for marketing and strategy and will manage the 10-year plan. His responsibilities include all marketing and branding, B2B tourism outreach and visitor centers. Whitten joined Visit Fort Worth in 2013.
Jessica Christopherson has been promoted to assistant vice president for marketing, overseeing advertising, public relations, social media and research. In her sixth year with the organization, she also serves as commissioner of the Fort Worth Film Commission.
Lauren Phillips has been named the first full-time research director for Visit Fort Worth and will oversee a $300,000 analytics portfolio to understand and reach its customers, the organization said in a news release.
She brings experience from the media industry – most recently Tegna, the parent company of Channel 8 – where she was responsible for understanding demographics and developing audience target strategies.
Ryan Oliver joins Visit Fort Worth as destination strategy manager and will coordinate key projects with various partners. Oliver was previously director of tourism for Mineral Wells and holds a master’s degree in tourism marketing.
Bric Shelton joins Visit Fort Worth as partnership manager and will work with attractions and other partners to develop promotions and experiences that raise Fort Worth’s profile as a visitor destination. He was previously at the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce and NBC 5.
“We want to increase the impact of the visitor economy by helping visitors stay longer and spend more,” Bob Jameson, president and CEO of Visit Fort Worth, said in the release. “These moves strengthen our ability to work with partners developing new experiences and coordinating our marketing efforts.”
Visit Fort Worth launched the Destination Master Plan at its annual meeting in February 2018 after nine months of community workshops, interviews and surveys. This was developed in concert with new strategic plans by the City and Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce.
In 2017, a record 9.1 million people visited Fort Worth, generating a $2.3 billion economic impact and supporting more than 23,000 jobs. Revenue from tourism to the City offsets the average homeowner’s taxes an estimated $598 each year, the news release said.
More on the Destination Master Plan: FortWorth.com/masterplan.
– FWBP Staff