OTE - Oregon Travel Experience

Press release: Governor’s Office appoints new council members

Posted on: August 7th, 2012 by Madeline MacGregor in News & Press | No Comments

Salem, Oregon August 7, 2012
Governor Kitzhaber appoints members of the Oregon Travel Information Council
Oregon Travel Experience (OTE) recently welcomed five new members to its governing board, the Oregon Travel Information Council (OTIC). Four members who previously served on the OTIC will continue on the Council, which was formed in 1971 under Oregon Revised Statute 377.835 and in 1993 received its semi-independent state agency status. OTE is based in Salem, Oregon, and is responsible for a variety of transportation information services to the public.

Ten volunteer members are appointed to the OTIC by the Governor’s Office—and one additional member is designated by the Oregon Transportation Commission Chair. Council members are selected for their knowledge of, experience with, and interest in economic development, travel within Oregon, recreational opportunities across the state, and Oregon history or natural history. At least one member serves from each congressional district. One remaining appointment will represent the Second Congressional District.

Newly appointed members serving a four year term include: Gwenn Baldwin, Baldwin Consulting LLC (Third Congressional District); Mary Olson, Norris, Olson & Associates (Oregon Transportation Commission designee); Charlotte Lehan, Clackamas County Commission Chair (Fifth Congressional District); Danuta Pfeiffer, Pfeiffer Winery (Fourth Congressional District); and Ed Washington, Portland State University.

OTE also welcomed returning members, who will serve for two more years: Mike Drennan, retired banker; and Bob Russell, Oregon Trucking Associations. Returning members serving out one more year include: Maria Ponzi Folgestrom, Ponzi Winery (First Congressional District); Tom Loun, Traffic Safety Supply Company; and David Porter, Leach Botanical Garden.

The following members were elected as Council officers: Chair, Gwenn Baldwin; Vice Chair, Bob Russell; Secretary, Mary Olson; and Public Member at Large, Mike Drennan.

The OTIC is a volunteer board, donating its time to oversee rules and policy, and helps steer the future of OTE’s varied programs. Their mission is to create a great visitor experience by providing directions to destinations, connecting travelers with Oregon’s resources, and ensuring safe and convenient travel.

Oregon Travel Experience helps support community businesses via its Highway Business Sign Programs, Travel Information Centers, and partnership with the Oregon Department of Transportation’s TripCheck. The agency’s heritage programs—Oregon Heritage Trees and Oregon Historical Markers, are coordinated with volunteer committees.

During 2012 Oregon legislation, OTE was mandated to supervise 10 additional state highway safety rest areas. OTE has legislatively been responsible for five rest areas since 2010, and was granted management of the Tillamook and Government Camp stops following passage of Senate Bill 1591 this February. Over the next two years, OTE will phase in five rest stops along Interstate-84 and three stops along Interstate-5.

For members of the press Download a PDF version of this press release

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