Ralph-Witsell"Discover Torrance is pleased to welcome Ralph as our new Executive Director," adds Ms. Ryan. "As we look forward to the next phase in the development of our marketing efforts for the city of Torrance, Ralph's industry expertise will prove invaluable in strengthening Torrance's economic climate and community partnerships."

Mr. Witsell was most recently the Executive Director of Tourism for the Reno Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority (RSCVA). During his decade-long tenure in Reno, Mr. Witsell was instrumental in re-branding the destination as Reno Tahoe, "America's Adventure Place" and developing a tracking system that identified each tour operator's production which enabled him to react to market trends and increase room night production. His career achievements also include a position as Product Development Manager for American Airlines Vacations (AAV), at the time, the largest tour operator owned solely by an airline.

"The City of Torrance offers so much opportunity to both leisure travelers and small to mid-sized meetings and conventions," notes Mr. Witsell. "Torrance offers both travelers the opportunity to enjoy a genuine Southern California experience (beaches, shopping, easy access to major attractions as well as a variety of hotel product and meeting facilities) without the traffic congestion and high price tag of many Los Angeles area locations." He also feels the ability to court international visitation as a result of Torrance's close proximity to LAX is an area where there is much business potential as well.

The Discover Torrance Visitors Bureau was originally formed in January of 2011 by a lodging group of 14 hotels of more than 50 rooms, the City of Torrance, and the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce to create a greater awareness for Torrance as an affordable, safe, and attractive Southern California tourism destination. Centrally located near Redondo Beach, Hollywood, Los Angeles, the University of Southern California (USC) and Long Beach, Torrance offers a diverse range of hotels with a total of 2,500 guest rooms, 51,000 square feet of meeting space, and 1.5 miles of shore front beach on the Pacific Ocean. The city is located 15 miles from both Los Angeles International Airport and Long Beach Airport.

Additional information on Torrance can be found at www.discovertorrance.com.