Brand USA’s President and CEO, Chris Thompson, has announced his impending retirement, effective May 31, 2024. Following a successful tenure at the helm of the United States’ destination marketing organization, Thompson plans to step down and pursue life beyond work.
During his time in leadership, Thompson has been instrumental in establishing the United States as a premier travel destination, achieving significant milestones including increased international visitation and global awareness of the country’s diverse attractions.
Thompson’s strategic vision and commitment to excellence have driven Brand USA’s success, fostering partnerships with industry stakeholders, government agencies, and international organizations. His efforts have cemented the organization’s position as a global leader in destination marketing.
Reflecting on his tenure, Thompson said, “It has been an incredible privilege to serve as President and CEO of Brand USA. I am immensely proud of what we have accomplished together, and I am confident that the organization will continue to thrive under new leadership.”
Todd Davidson, Chair of the Brand USA Board and CEO of Travel Oregon, commended Thompson’s exceptional leadership and significant contributions. He highlighted Thompson’s integrity, passion, and belief in the power of the travel and tourism industry to bring prosperity to all Americans.
With Thompson’s retirement approaching, Brand USA has initiated a search for a new President and CEO. The Board of Directors, in collaboration with an executive search firm, is committed to finding a successor who can carry on Thompson’s legacy and continue to propel the organization forward.
Brand USA was established by the Travel Promotion Act as the nation’s first public-private partnership to promote the United States as a premier travel destination. Over the past decade, Brand USA’s marketing initiatives have welcomed 8 million incremental visitors to the United States, generating more than $58 billion in total economic impact and supporting an average of over 37,000 incremental jobs per year.