Black Meetings and Tourism

Nov/Dec 2011

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I discovered that he stems from my home state,Ohio and is a grad- uate of Central State University. He received his Certified Travel Consultant accreditation from The Travel Institute and his InternationalTravel accreditation fromthe InternationalAviation and TravelAcademy. Just as the public goes to a travel agent to gain knowledge of trav- The HAPPIEST Place On Earth N. Ray JacksoN By VIcToRIa HEaD One would think that practically everyone across the globe has heard ofWalt DisneyWorld Resort and the Disneyland Resort, i.e. the home of Mickey & Minnie Mouse. Though that may be close to true, it is the responsibility of Disney'sTravel Industry Sales team to exhaust all channels,ensuring that the"Happiest Place on Earth's lat- est and greatest vacation/travel information gets to industry profes- sionals far andwide. AsDisney continues to cultivate itswell-known family based travel opportunities,much needed are those who can effectively get the word to travel professionals and to the traveling public informing all that's up and coming in the phenomenalworld of Disney. Well, in the Midwest - Illinois, promoting Disney's evolving opportunities to travel agents, tour operators, Convention and Visitors Bureaus and associations,N.Ray Jackson is theDistrict Sales Manager responsible for managing Disney's cache of products. After 26 years in the travel industry, Jackson began his Disney career as a Cast member in 2000; he is now the district sales man- ager forDisneyDestinations LLC-WaltDisneyTravelCompany and has since been enjoying the ride. Duringmy interviewwith Jackson, 56 el options and acclaimed locations, travel professionals seek out Jackson to learn themagnitude of Disney's alluring product and how to market that product to today's travelers via radio,TV, advertising and print mediums. Once he's connected with potential travel part- ners desiring to embrace and sell the Disney product, Jackson pro- vides marketing/sales training and assists with the advertising of the Disney products.The foundational product is of courseWalt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort, but travel professionals also must stay in the know about the newest launches by Disney Cruise Line, as well as the most recently unveiled Aulani, Disney's newest resort located in KoOlina,Hawaii along withAdventures by Disney, its family based escorted tours product. Jackson, along with others atDisney,anticipate great reviews fromthe recent opening ofAulani; it's founded in true Hawaiian culture; utilizing skilled artesian crafts- men, traditional art work and design and much collaboration with Hawaiian historians. "Early 2011, the newest Disney cruise ship, the Disney Dream, entered into service, sailing to Nassau, Bahamas and Castaway Cay, Disney's ultimate private island escape – rated byDisneyCruise Line guests as their favorite port of call," explained Jackson.. Also, in March, 2012 Disney will launch Disney Fantasy, sister ship of Disney Dream. Both new ships have the upgraded capacity to 1,250 state- rooms. Adventures byDisney is their escorted group vacation prod- uct whereAdventure Guides escort vacationers (no more than 40 on an adventure) to some of the world's most popular destinations such as Greece, France, Egypt,Australia and the Galapagos Islands. "I've worked for other companies,butDisney is by far one of the best," says Jackson. "They value and encourage their employee's bal- ance of work and family; there are no 10 or 12 hour days here, because they know that if cast members are happy, they'll be happi- er at work." Jackson also explains that there are a lot of opportuni- ties for people of all races at Disney. Great strides have been made with the introduction ofmulticultural lead characters inDisney's ani- mated movies - Mulan, Pocahontas, Aladdin and more recently Disney's new African-American Princess Tiana. One of Jackson's goals is to seek out new opportunities for people of all ethnicities to enjoy the Disney experience. He is glad to have been appointed to sit on the company's DiversityTeam and have input in this area. N. Ray Jackson invites travel professionals to partner with this extraordinary company. Those interested may contact Mr. Jackson via Email – Black Meetings & Tourism November/December 2011:

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