On Wednesday, May 26, at the IMEX show in Frankfurt, Laurie Sprouse, CITE, CMP, DMCP, president of Ultimate Ventures, a Dallas-based destination management company, became the first-ever recipient of the Master Motivator Award from Site. This new award recognizes individuals serving as ambassadors of progress for the global community.

At the awards ceremony, Site President Sean Mahoney called Sprouse “a testament to how one person can effect change.” Last year, Sprouse led a group of 20 Texas-based DMCs who hired a lobbyist to fight the state government’s efforts to reclassify DMCs as resellers. The change would have required that they collect sales tax on the fees they charge for their services when any tangible personal property is involved. Further, if the DMCs were to combine entertainment and transportation (nontaxable services) with a meal, the whole package would have been taxed, including these otherwise nontaxable services.

Sprouse testified before the state legislature and gained the support of the state hospitality community, including the National Federation of Independent Business, Texas Travel Industry Association, Texas Hotel & Lodging Association, Texas Restaurant Association, and Texas Association of Convention & Visitor Bureaus. Similar battles by DMCs are ongoing in various states, including California.

“The Site Master Motivator award is just one way to highlight the extraordinary work of our industry’s professionals in advocating for our community and creating business opportunities,” said Brenda Anderson, Site’s CEO. “We honor Laurie as a Master Motivator for her drive to keep our industry vibrant and business in her area flourishing.”

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