Sponsor annual event aimed at convention and meeting planners

Will "sponsor an annual event to bring national association meeting planners and Wisconsin businesses together. I will make this (Conference of Tourism) a key component of both my tourism and economic development agenda."

Subjects: Recreation


Time has run out for an annual event this term

As a candidate for governor, Scott Walker made a number of promises concerning economic development. In one pledge, he said the state would sponsor an annual event to "bring national association meeting planners and Wisconsin businesses together."

So, what's happened to that pledge during Walker's time in office?

Connect Marketplace, an education and networking conference for association meeting professionals, and the National Governors Association are both holding conventions in Milwaukee in August 2013.

Paul Upchurch, president and chief executive officer of the Visit Milwaukee convention and visitors bureau, told us Walker was active in landing both conventions. But he said he wasn"t aware of an effort for an annual meeting planner-Wisconsin business event like the one Walker promised.

Walker spokeswoman Jocelyn Webster said the governor meets this promise through the Governors Conference on Tourism.

But that annual event was created before Walker was elected and is for Wisconsin members of the hospitality industry, not for national association meeting planners to connect with Wisconsin businesses.

Walker is more than halfway into his term, there isn"t time for him to hold an annual convention (at least two consecutive years) before his term ends. We rate this a Promise Broken.


Email interview, Gov. Scott Walker spokeswoman Jocelyn Webster, July 12, 2013

Interview, Visit Milwaukee president and chief executive officer Paul Upchurch, July 12, 2013

Facebook, Travel Wisconsin"s 2010 Wisconsin Governor"s Conference on Tourism page