The Travel Industry Association of America (TIA) announced today that former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell will be the closing luncheon speaker during TIA’s International Pow Wow, taking place in New York City, May 3 - 7, 2005. During his speech, which is sponsored by United Airlines, Powell will talk about forging alliances that bring people and countries together and the travel industry’s role in this important mission.
“We’re delighted to have someone of Colin Powell’s stature address the delegates of International Pow Wow. He’s one of most respected statesmen in U.S. history and he fully understands the positive impact that travel and tourism can have on our U.S. image in foreign countries,” said Betsy O’Rourke, TIA’s senior vice president of marketing and general manager of International Pow Wow. “We especially want to thank United Airlines for making this event possible.”
In its 37th year, TIA’s International Pow Wow remains the largest visit USA trade show in the world. During the show, more than 1,000 U.S. organizations conduct scheduled business appointments with 1,500 top international and domestic buyers from more than 70 countries. Through these business negotiations, several billion dollars worth of future travel to the U.S. is generated. At International Pow Wow, buyers and sellers are able to conduct business that would otherwise be possible only through an exhaustive number of around-the-world trips.
In addition to featuring Powell as a keynote speaker at International Pow Wow, TIA will also be hosting an executive roundtable with top government officials to discuss facilitation issues facing inbound travelers, including visas, biometric passport requirements and the perceived hassle factor of visiting the U.S. The roundtable will be comprised of senior officers from the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of State and the Department of Commerce. TIA’s president and CEO, Roger J. Dow, will moderate the panel. The executive roundtable will take place on Friday, May 6 from 11:30 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.
General Colin L. Powell (Ret.) became the 65th Secretary of State in 2001 under President George W. Bush, and retired from that post earlier this year. Before becoming Secretary of State, Powell served as a key aide to the Secretary of Defense and as National Security Advisor to President Reagan. He also served 35 years in the United States Army, rising to the rank of Four-Star General and serving as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989 - 1993). During this time he oversaw 28 crises, including the Panama intervention of 1989 and Operation Desert Storm in the 1991 Persian Gulf War. After retiring from the Army, he wrote his autobiography, My American Journey. In 1997 he established America’s Promise - The Alliance for Youth, a nonprofit organization to help needy and at-risk children. Powell is married to the former Alma Vivian Johnson of Birmingham, Alabama. They have one son, two daughters, and two grandsons.