US Travel Honors Congressional Travel Champions, Prominent Leader: Blunt,

Published: Thursday, April 7, 2022

The US Travel Association on Wednesday announced the recipients of its 2022 Travel Champion Award: Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) has been awarded the Association’s Distinguished Leadership Award and Senator Amy Kloboucher (D-MN) and Congressman Darren Lahm R. (

Everyone is being honored for their exceptional leadership in advancing and protecting policies that strengthen travel in and around the United States.

US Travel today presented awards during the Capitol Hill, the travel and tourism industry’s main legal fly-in event, dedicated to educating policymakers about the power of travel and showing the industry as one of America’s most important economic sectors. The event brought industry leaders to the U.S. Capitol for more than 260 meetings with members of Congress to advocate for policies to accelerate the recovery of travel.

“Collective voices are vital to this year’s destination, Capitol Hill,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the US Travel Association. “Travel recovery has been uneven and we are not where we should be in terms of business and international inbound travel. Lawmakers can help revitalize travel and rebuild good American jobs created by policies that support the industry that will encourage these important sectors. “

This year’s travel champions symbolize the tireless work needed to revive the U.S. travel industry.

“Travel supports communities in every region of the United States and will be important for our country’s economic recovery,” said US Travel’s Dow. “This year’s Travel Champions and Prominent Leaders have consistently reached out across the Isle to advance policies to strengthen the travel industry, strengthen its workforce, and increase global competition. We honor Senator Blunt and Cloboucher and Congressman Lahud for their outstanding support in the American travel and tourism industry. “

Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO)
In his 25 years in Congress, Senator Blunt has been a pragmatic leader in Congress and a longtime advocate for the travel industry.

Senator Blunt co-sponsored the original Travel Promotion Act to establish Brand USA in 2009 and led the effort to move the program forward through two re-approvals and emergency funding efforts amid the epidemic. Beyond the brand USA, Senator Blunt was a champion of reasonable advances for a COVID vaccine here in the United States, which allowed travel to resume more freely. Importantly, Senator Blunt pushed for relief efforts across the epidemic and helped ensure that destination marketing agencies were qualified for the Paycheck protection program. He has championed many other travel-related priorities and has been a strong voice on the importance of travel and travel-related business in the broader economy. He also served as vice president of the Senate Travel and Tourism Caucus.

“America’s travel and tourism industry supports millions of jobs and contributes more than a trillion dollars to our economy,” said Senator Blunt. “Tourism is especially important for a state like ours, which is home to some of the best parks, historical sites, landmarks and attractions in the country. I am incredibly grateful to everyone who is part of the travel and tourism industry in Missouri for their tireless efforts to create opportunities in local communities and to welcome visitors to our state. I commend the strong leadership of the US Travel Association and what they are doing to help businesses recover from the effects of the epidemic. I am proud to receive this award, and I will continue to work in Congress to support policies and programs that will encourage travel and tourism in Missouri and across the country. “

Senator Amy Cloboucher (D-MN)
Senator Kloboucher is a strong champion in the travel industry and one of the biggest advocates of the brand USA since the beginning of the program. Senator Kloubucher was instrumental in co-sponsoring and passing the Restoration Brand USA Act, which provided $ 250 million in relief funds for our country’s destination marketing agency. He also served as vice president of the Senate Travel and Tourism Caucus.

“Thank you to the US Travel Association for honoring me with the 2022 Travel Champion Award. Travel and tourism are vital to boosting economic growth and creating jobs for communities in Minnesota and across our country, “said Senator Kloubucher. “This year, we signed into law our bilateral recovery brand USA, which will provide much-needed financial support to our tourism industry to promote travel. As we said in Duluth, we are finally seeing the lighthouse on the horizon, and as more businesses open their doors to more visitors and customers, we need to remind our international travelers of what we have to offer. As Vice President of the Senate Travel and Tourism Caucus, I am committed to advancing travel and tourism across the country, making America the best place in the world to travel. ”

Congressman Darren Lahud (R-IL)
Congressman Lahud is one of the strongest voices in the US House of Representatives to champion the economic power of the travel industry. Throughout the epidemic, Congressman Lahud has advanced policies to help restore all sectors of travel equally, including the introduction of bipartisan hospitality and trade job restoration legislation.

“It’s an honor to receive the 2022 Travel Champion Award from the US Travel Association,” said Congressman Lahud. “Illinois is home to strong travel and tourism, including the scenic Route 66 and the Abraham Lincoln Heritage Site in my congressional district. Last year, I was proud to introduce the Hospitality and Commerce Job Recovery Act to support Illinois businesses that rely on a strong travel and tourism industry because they were unequally affected by the COVID-19 epidemic and state-directed closures. I will continue to work on the Way and Finance Committee to support the broader travel and tourism industry in Illinois. “

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