Destination Stewardship Strategic Planning Initiative

Public Consultation Process

Our dedicated team has been hard at work since June of 2023, consulting with over 1,000 industry partners and stakeholders to create a comprehensive destination stewardship strategic plan that embraces the diverse landscapes and communities that define Colorado. We are now inviting the public to be part of the review and feedback process and need your input to shape the draft strategic plan.  

To provide your input, please review the Draft Framework and complete this survey to provide your feedback. Thank you for being an integral part of a shared commitment to destination stewardship and a thriving tourism future for Colorado.

Watch a recording of a webinar that provided an in-depth look into the draft strategy framework and shed light on the strategies under development for key focus areas.

Initiative Overview

Destination stewardship is a strategic industry framework that takes a collaborative  approach to support our state balance the quality of life for residents alongside the experience for visitors to Colorado while enhancing our natural environment, cultures and communities. 

Through a year-long planning effort beginning in May 2023, the Colorado Tourism Office will be developing a new destination stewardship strategy in collaboration and cooperation with industry thought leaders and stakeholders, state and federal agencies, communities and residents, so that private and public partnerships can be fostered, and existing work across the state can be built upon. The output of this planning effort will be a statewide destination stewardship strategic plan, eight regional destination stewardship strategic plans and a destination stewardship glossary of terms. 

The strategic planning effort is being led by the CTO’s Destination Stewardship Department, the first department of its kind within a U.S. state tourism office. Staff are supported by the Destination Stewardship Council, a 27-member advisory group made up of industry leaders from all eight travel regions throughout Colorado.  This Council serves as an advisory group to the CTO supporting the ongoing work to elevate responsible travel and sustainability, champion resilient destinations and advance inclusiveness and collaboration.

Members of CTO’s Destination Stewardship Council

  • Marlon Reis, First Gentleman of the State of Colorado, resident of Denver
  • Ken Murphy, President of Adventure Outdoors LLC, resident of Glenwood Springs
  • Laura Soard, Sr. Director of Destination Development, Steamboat Springs Chamber, resident of Steamboat Springs
  • Jeff Lyman, Tour Director, Southwest Adventure Tours, resident of Ignacio
  • Lucy Kay, CEO of the Breckenridge Tourism Office, resident of Breckenridge
  • Ethan Billingsley, Faculty of Colorado State University, resident of Fort Collins
  • Adam Ducharme, Tourism Director for Visit Leadville - Twin Lakes, resident of Leadville
  • Margaret Bowes, Executive Director of Colorado Association of Ski Towns, resident of Summit County
  • Topher Downham, Outreach Coordinator for City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks, resident of Boulder
  • Alex Boian, Senior Director of Community Relations for Vail Resorts, resident of Erie
  • Pamela Denahy, Director of Tourism for the City of La Junta, resident of La Junta
  • Joe Lavorini, Program Manager for the National Forest Foundation/Gunnison STOR, resident of Crested Butte
  • Chelsea Elder, Executive Director of Adaptive Adventures, resident of Westminster
  • Taishya Adams, Chief Liberation Strategist for Mukuyu Collective LLC, resident of Boulder
  • Kathryn Redhorse, Executive Director of Colorado Commission of Indian Affairs
  • Kim Langmaid, Associate Professor of Sustainability for Colorado Mountain College and Mayor of the Town of Vail, resident of Vail
  • Greg Felt, County Commissioner for Chaffee County, resident of Salida
  • Becky Leinweber, Executive Director of Pikes Peak Outdoor Recreation Alliance, resident of Colorado Springs
  • Dzidra Junior, VP of Business Development, YMCA of the Rockies
  • Kyle Patterson, Management Specialist/Public Affairs Officer for Rocky Mountain National Park, resident of Estes Park
  • Jeff Christenson, Outdoor Recreation Planner for the Bureau of Land Management- Colorado State Office, resident of Dolores
  • Jackie Miller, Executive Director of Great Outdoors Colorado, resident of Denver
  • Kiera Skinner, Executive Director of the Telluride Tourism Board, resident of Telluride
  • Jody Kennedy, Regional Partnership Program Manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, resident of Denver
  • Beth Abbott, Director of Marketing and Branding for Denver International Airport, resident of Thornton
  • Jason Robertson, Regional Director Recreation, Lands, Minerals & Volunteers of USDA Forest Service, resident of Golden
  • Conor Hall, Director of the Colorado Outdoor Recreation Industry Office, resident of Denver

The CTO has contracted a tourism planning consulting team, Solimar International, to lead the research, planning, and consultations to draft the final statewide and regional plans. Solimar International’s team has been working throughout the state for the last two years in tourism recovery efforts and has developed a deep knowledge of the challenges and opportunities for tourism throughout the state.

Project Timeline

Completion of the Colorado Destination Stewardship Strategic Plan is scheduled for June 2024, with implementation and ongoing community engagement to continue once the final plan is delivered. 

PHASE 1 Stakeholder Outreach and Engagement (May – July 2023)
PHASE 2Investigation & Listening (May-September 2023)
PHASE 3Colorado Stewardship Planning & Consultations (September 2023—January 2024)
PHASE 4Regional Stewardship Planning (January—May 2024)
PHASE 5Implementation Planning (May – June 2024)

The three outcomes of the planning process are:

  • A “Glossary of Terms” for Colorado’s tourism industry
  • A Statewide Destination Stewardship Strategic Plan
  • Eight Regional Destination Stewardship Strategic Plans

Stay Informed

The planning process is designed to be participatory with a commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility, to give all residents in the state of Colorado a chance to be heard, share their voice, and help shape destination stewardship for the place where they live, work, and play. Industry partners including state and federal government agencies will also participate in a series of input processes.

Follow this link to access the Partner Communications Toolkit

Download the fact sheet about the Destination Stewardship Strategic Planning initiative.

Regular project updates and announcements will keep the public and industry informed via the Colorado Tourism Office weekly Tourism Tuesday email newsletter.

For additional information or questions, please contact CTO Destination Stewardship Specialist, Jackson Feld at jackson.feld@state.co.us


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