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Maggie Davison, 2018 Alto Ambassador

Maggie Davison, Vice-President of Edmonton Tourism at the Edmonton Economic Development Corporation is the 2018 Alto Ambassador. Maggie provides extraordinary leadership, acts as mentor to many in the Alberta tourism industry and works to grow tourism across the province.

Maggie describes learning of her nomination by colleagues as a complete surprise and a humbling experience, but it is easy to see why as her passion for the tourism industry shines through when you speak with her.

“Always willing to take a risk, or to think outside the box, Maggie’s contributions to the Alberta tourism industry will leave a substantial legacy in our province for many years to come,” said Renee Williams, director of international marketing development at Edmonton Tourism.

For over 28 years, Maggie has made significant contributions to the tourism industry—running her own businesses, promoting Canada internationally, and strengthening tourism provincially through her involvement in two of Alberta’s largest DMOs.

A true entrepreneur, Maggie began her career in tourism as the owner/operator of a manufacturing business and travel franchise. 

In 2005, she became managing director for the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) working in the United Kingdom. Managing the consumer awareness portfolio for Brand Canada, she was executive producer for Canada Day in Trafalgar Square and the Canada Ice Rink at Canary Wharf. In 2008 Maggie returned to Canada to lead the CTC’s business development portfolio for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver. 

In 2009, Maggie moved to Jasper to further her legacy and her love for Alberta. Starting work from her kitchen table, she built the team from scratch, and led the organization as CEO for over three years.

“Without question, neither I, nor many of my provincial colleagues would be where we are today without Maggie’s leadership, expertise and mentorship. Tourism in Alberta will benefit from Maggie’s legacy for years to come,” said James Jackson, general manager for Tourism Jasper. 

Maggie spearheaded Jasper’s inaugural Dark Sky Festival in 2011. Her creative marketing expertise turned one of Alberta’s most unique and breathtaking festivals into an internationally-renowned product that brings visitors from all over the world to Jasper in the fall.

Maggie’s passion for new opportunities and memorable traveller experiences set the foundation for Jasper’s popularity as a travel destination and Tourism Jasper as a leading marketing organization in the Canadian Rockies.

Always open to a new challenge, Maggie joined Edmonton Tourism as Vice-President in 2013. When asked what she is most proud of in Edmonton, she talks about her passion for discovering a destination’s story, and finding unique ways to tell that story to get the world to listen.

“The team worked really, really hard on digging deep to understand what made Edmonton unique and how to represent ourselves in a way that differentiates us from other cities. And I think that’s been one of our biggest successes. We have found the secret of Edmonton and it really is about its people and its sense of community and we are able to share that with the world, which is really cool,” said Maggie.

Maggie is an award-winning industry and team leader. Under her leadership, Edmonton Tourism has been recognized for the following awards:

  • 2014 ALTOS – Partnership with EIA for “Icelandmania” Edmonton Tourism Winter Campaign
  • 2015 ALTOS – Red Bull Crashed Ice 
  • 2017 ALTOS – #CaptureCalgary
  • IABC Awards of Excellence – Marketing, Communication, Brand Communication
  • IABC Awards of Excellence – Communication Management, Social Media Programs, Communication Skills – Digital Communication.
  • ACE Awards of Distinction – Magazine Series

Mentorship is an ongoing theme of her career. “Lots of people helped me and whenever I asked how I could repay them, most of them said just pay it forward. So I think for both Jasper and Edmonton, it’s all about me sharing what I have learned and helping people through the process of learning and to be the best they can be,” said Maggie.

Maggie has devoted her life to tourism and she wouldn’t have it any other way. 

“We are selling dreams, we are selling happiness, we are selling R and R–what better space to be in than tourism. There’s a passion here that I don’t think you find in other industries.” 

The Alto Awards are presented annually during the Travel Alberta Industry Conference. The 2018 Alto Awards will take place on October 22, 2018 at the Banff Springs Hotel.

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