Judy Ryals, President/CEO of the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau, joined the Bureau in 1978 and is the longest serving director of a tourism agency in the State of Alabama. She has been appointed by six governors to serve on the Advisory Board of the Alabama Tourism Department and currently serves as Chairman. She was one of the first females to serve as a board member of the International Association of Convention & Visitor Bureaus, which is now Destination Marketing Association International. She has served on the Board of Directors of many statewide boards including the Alabama Council of Association Executives, Alabama Association of Convention & Visitor Bureaus and Alabama Travel Council. She received the state’s top award and was inducted into the Alabama Tourism Hall of Fame, the first CVB representative to receive this award. The Huntsville/Madison County CVB was chosen as organization of the year by the Alabama tourism industry as well as by Alabama Mountain Lakes Association, the north Alabama regional tourism marketing organization. She is a graduate of the University of Alabama where she received a degree in public relations in 1976. Mrs. Ryals, an Alabama native, is married to Davis W. Ryals, Jr. The couple has two sons, Bo and Matt.
Lori Dendy’s family moved to Huntsville in the early 60s to become part of the space program. Lori arrived a bit later and is proud to be the native in the family. Her first job helping newcomers transition to the city, led her to appreciate the natural beauty and opportunities of her hometown with new perspective. Now she’s happy to be sharing that information with visitors looking to make the most of their time in the Rocket City. In addition to life with her engineer husband and two adult children, Lori enjoys reading Southern literature, volunteering and experiencing Huntsville’s local music scene.
Julian was born and raised in Columbia, Maryland, where he resided until his junior year of high school. He then moved to the Virginia Beach area, graduating from Green Run High School. Shortly after high school Julian was committed to attending Oakwood University, where he graduated with a Bachelor's in Business Administration. The knowledge and networking skills attained at this HBCU allowed him to attain vast work experience in management in multiple fields, from healthcare to health and wellness. Julian is committed to the growth of the Huntsville/Madison area and is looking forward to making this city a destination for all age groups and forms of entertainment.
As Director of Community Engagement & Technology, Sharon Snell works to further the mission of the CVB by creating and growing strategic partnerships with the local community, city officials, and hospitality industry partners. She increases awareness of the economic impact of the tourism and convention business and fosters an understanding of the benefits offered by the CVB. Sharon works closely with the senior management team to promote Huntsville/Madison County as a welcoming multicultural destination, in addition to creating and overseeing a CVB Ambassador Program and an Annual Community Engagement Plan. Her hospitality industry career began in 1999 as a Convention Sales Manager and most recently served as Senior Convention Sales Manager and Technology Network Manager for the organization. As Senior Convention Sales Manager, she was responsible for marketing Huntsville, Madison, and Madison County as meeting destinations for religious, fraternal, and multicultural markets. Additionally, Sharon oversees technology operations at the Bureau. A Michigan native, Sharon graduated from HBCU Tennessee State University, receiving a Management Information Systems degree.
Jamie serves as the Vice President of Conventions and oversees all functions of the convention department. He previously served as the director of sales and marketing at the Westin Huntsville. Before his tenure at the Westin, Mr. Koshofer moved through the ranks in various Atlanta, GA, hotel positions, starting as a senior sales manager at the Emory Conference Center Hotel and then on to director of national accounts for the Saddlebrook Resort. Jamie moved to Huntsville from the Atlanta area to become of the director of sales and marketing at the Westin/Element Huntsville and to be closer to family. His wife, Katie, is a physician assistant at a family practice in Madison, and they have three children. He and his family enjoy a variety of family activities Huntsville offers.
With love for travel and a passion for people, Erica was destined to be in hospitality. In addition to her welcoming smile and eager ear, she’s a Huntsville native and “grew up” within the hospitality industry. She is a Faulkner University graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. Erica thrives on professional development and continues to grow through memberships and involvement in numerous organizations. Currently, she serves as a Board Member on the Redstone-Huntsville Chapter of the Association of the United States Army (AUSA), and a proud member of the Rocket City Alabama Society of Government Meeting Professionals (SGMP). Erica has been appointed as a Trustee on the SGMP Gilmer Institute of Learning (GIL) Fundraising Board Trustee. As Convention Sales Manager covering the government, military reunions, and fraternal markets, she is responsible for promoting Huntsville/ Madison County as a meeting and convention venue. When she’s not promoting Rocket City, Erica’s most valued time is spent with her wonderful husband, amazing daughter, family, friends, and sorors. You can find her enjoying an outdoor concert, reading, or planning her next adventure when she's not working.
With a passion for sports and communities, Joel Lamp joined the CVB team in 2021, bringing more than 20 years of experience in the sports and entertainment industry. Over the past 16 years in Jacksonville, Lamp oversaw bringing the national spotlight to Northeast Florida with the first and second rounds of the NCAA men’s basketball championship, the NCAA Tournament first and second rounds to VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in 2006, 2010, 2015 and 2018 along with stints as the Senior Associate Athletics Director at Jacksonville University and the University of North Florida. He also was responsible for launching the Moe’s Classic, a two-day college and high school lacrosse event at TIAA Bank Field and bringing the USA Cycling Amateur Road Nationals to Clay County in 2021. An avid golfer, Lamp and his wife Bonnie are the proud parents of their son, Steven, spending their free time helping him to chase his dreams.
Misty Williams is a “born and raised” true native of North Alabama where she enjoyed growing up in Trinity and then went on to graduate from the University of North Alabama in Florence with a degree in marketing. She discovered her passion for hospitality and tourism when she began working in sales in the hotel industry immediately after college. Over the last 19 years, she advanced her career within the Hilton and Marriott portfolio of hotels in Huntsville holding positions as Sales Manager, Director of Sales, and Area Director of Sales. Her most recent position prior to joining the CVB was as the Director of Sales with the Embassy Suites Hotel and Spa in downtown Huntsville. As a Convention Sales Manager, Misty promotes Huntsville/Madison County as a convention destination covering the Association, Fraternal, and Technology markets. She is active in various organizations, including the Alabama Council of Association Executives. Misty enjoys singing and listening to live music, including her husband Marty’s country music band. Misty and Marty reside in New Hope.
Kevin was born and raised in Gadsden, Alabama, and brings to the CVB a variety of experience in nonprofits and hospitality, including hotel guest service, food and beverage, sales, and meeting and event support. Following his experience at Yellowstone National Park in his college years, Kevin worked as an education counselor for a nonprofit organization providing social services to disadvantaged young men. Prior to moving to Huntsville, Kevin worked with the Sheraton and Westin hotels in Birmingham, AL; first as a food and beverage supervisor, then as an event meeting specialist, supporting large events at the Birmingham Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC). Taking an opportunity to move to Huntsville, he began a position at the Westin and Element hotels as a corporate catering sales manager and then food and beverage manager, assisting with a variety of corporate holiday parties and events, including the American Heart Ball in 2019. In his spare time, Kevin loves being outdoors and enjoys hiking, camping, traveling, and spending time with his family, friends and fur buddies.
Executive Vice President - Marketing, Media & Advertising inquiries
Charles Winters As Executive Vice President, Charles Winters oversees all marketing and public relations of the organization. A graduate of Huntsville High School and the University of North Alabama, Charles began his career at the CVB in 1986. He actively serves on several boards, including the North American Travel Journalists Association Advisory Board, the Rotary Club of Greater Huntsville Foundation Board, the Huntsville Sports Commission, and the Alabama Small Business Commission. Charles currently serves as President of the Huntsville-Madison County Hospitality Association and is a past recipient of the prestigious Alabama Tourism Employee of the Year Award.
After 25 years in the Greater Birmingham area, Lori Leonard returned to North Alabama, where she holds the position of Director of Marketing. After graduating from the University of North Alabama with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing, Lori served as the Executive Director for several non-profit organizations, including the Homewood Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Hoover, and Leadership Trussville. She also served in marketing leadership roles at various for-profit entities and ran a successful consulting business for many years. In her role at the CVB, Lori oversees the promotional and advertising efforts of the agency as well as various campaigns. She manages social media and graphic design team members and works with hospitality industry partners to continue positioning Huntsville, Madison, and Madison County as top visitor destinations and meeting sites.
Leah Hall is a Seattle, WA, native who came to Alabama with over 13 years of experience as a graphic designer, art director, photographer, and illustrator. She’s worked with companies such as Amazon Kindle, Hearst Magazines, Microsoft Windows, Seattle Pacific University, and World Vision. Her work has been featured in various publications, including Country Living Magazine, Seattle Magazine, Wine Spectator, and SPU’s Response Magazine. She also has written and created articles for countyliving.com. She loves working with people and brands that are passionate about the story they have to tell, and she’s excited to share Huntsville’s story – especially during this exciting season of growth in our city. She lives in Huntsville with her husband Andrew and pup Rothko, and outside of work enjoys getting out in nature, trying new restaurants, having movie marathons, and cooking for friends.
Hannah Wilkins joins the Huntsville-Madison County Convention and Visitors Bureau as the CVB’s Social Media Manager. A new resident of Huntsville, Hannah comes to the city from her hometown of Jackson, Mississippi, where she has spent six years in the tourism and event management industry. Despite her Mississippi roots, this is not the first time Hannah has called Alabama home. Previously, Hannah served as a National Leadership Consultant for Kappa Delta Sorority. She oversaw operations, executive leadership recruiting, and marketing strategies for an $80,000-dollar development project at The University of Alabama Birmingham. After her time in consulting and project development, her passion for connection and creativity ultimately led her to the tourism industry, where she served as Group Sales Manager before transitioning into the marketing department of the Ridgeland Tourism Commission (Visit Ridgeland) in Ridgeland, Mississippi. During her time with Visit Ridgeland, Hannah cultivated strong professional and personal relationships within the hospitality industry while serving as the organization’s trade show representative, stakeholder liaison, and official tour guide. She also served as a member of Visit Ridgeland’s content creation team, including producing short and long-form videos, social media campaigns, blogs, television broadcasts, and website design. When she’s not behind the screen working on the next digital campaign, Hannah enjoys searching for her next favorite hamburger spot, spending hours in craft supply stores, and getting outdoors with her husband, Borden, and their four dogs, Chewee, Cranjis, CeCe, and Grump.
Jennifer Moore is the Vice President of Tourism and is a 20-year veteran at the Convention & Visitors Bureau. Her responsibilities include overseeing all aspects of the tourism department, including promoting Huntsville/Madison County to leisure, group, and international visitors, and overseeing the administration and operation of the Bureau’s two Visitor Centers. Jennifer works closely with industry partners locally, regionally, and nationally to promote and share information about the area. She currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association, the Northern District Vice President of the Alabama Travel Council, and serves on the Local Leadership Team for the Tennessee Riverline. In addition, she has served on numerous boards, including the U.S. Travel Association’s Destination Council Board of Directors, the Auburn Alumni Association’s National Board of Directors, the Huntsville/Madison County Hospitality Association, and is a past President of Hotel Sales and Marketing Executives. She has been honored to receive several industry awards, including the Award of Excellence from the Alabama Travel Council, the Tourism Employee of the Year from the Alabama Tourism Department, the Tourism Professional of the Year from the Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association, and the Huntsville Hospitality Association’s Red Ribbon Award. Jennifer graduated from Leadership’s Huntsville/Madison County Class 25 and is a certified Tourism Marketing Professional (TMP) through the Southeast Tourism Society. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from Auburn University. She is married to Steven Moore, and they are the parents of two children, Courtney and Ryan.
Tourism and Education Sales Manager
Pamela Brooks Williams is a Huntsville native who is passionate about her city and sharing its highlights. She has been with the Huntsville/Madison County CVB since 2005. As Tourism Sales Manager, she works to bring groups of all types and leisure travelers to our community and especially enjoys working with student groups through the unique offerings available exclusively by our Educational Escapes program which she coordinates. Pam is responsible for implementing and coordinating new projects and events in Huntsville such as Culinary Month and Huntsville Restaurant Week, Lucky Duck Scavenger Hunt, and Trains on Main Scavenger Hunt. As Education Sales Manager, she works with the Conventions Team, focusing on the education and tourism conference markets. Pam holds the industry designations of Tourism Marketing Professional (Southeast Tourism Society) and Certified Travel Professional (National Tour Association). In 2022, Pam was named Tourism Professional of the Year by the Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association. She currently serves on the board of the Alabama Restaurant and Hospitality Association. Before joining the Bureau, Pam began her career in tourism and hospitality at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center and Space Academy serving in various roles. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Alabama Huntsville with a degree in history and political science. Pam is passionate about travel (checking off the states and national parks currently) and is frequently on the go. She is the blessed mother of three talented, intelligent, very busy children and one spoiled fur baby.
Growing up in Huntsville as a child and returning as a young adult after being stationed overseas and at stateside Army bases with her father, mother and sisters, Terry Winland calls the Rocket City home. She brings twelve plus years of experience in tourism from the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, where she gave tours to individuals, groups, and dignitaries. In addition, she also scheduled and coordinated individual and group Space Camp adventures. A break to raise two wonderful sons allowed her to participate in the education of preschoolers, then on to management within the medical world at a private internal medicine clinic and a stint at UAB-Huntsville Regional Medical Campus as Clinic Coordinator for Internal Medicine. A myriad of experiences has helped to make her a well-rounded ambassador for the City of Huntsville. As Visitor Center Manager, she strives to help visitors and residents alike feel the excitement, see the beauty, learn the history and look forward to the bright future of Huntsville. Terry has a wonderful husband, Mike along with their two amazing sons, Andrew and James. She loves to bake, and share her creations with others.
Districts & Neighborhoods
- U.S. Space & Rocket Center
- Space Camp®
- Rocket City Kids Pass
About the CVB