DALLAS, Texas (July 19, 2023)—Kyle Edmiston, President/CEO of Visit Lake Charles, was recently honored with the Destination Organization Leadership Award at the Destinations International Annual Convention in Dallas, Texas.  The Destination Organization Leadership Award is among the association's most prestigious honors, recognizing those outstanding individuals who, through their exceptional work and achievements, have made a significant contribution to the destination marketing industry and a profound difference in the communities they serve.


“I am deeply honored by this recognition,” said Edmiston. “To be recognized by my peers in this way is a testament not of my work, but the hard work of the entire Visit Lake Charles team that works to promote our community and the joy that travelers can experience here, as well as working with committed leaders in Calcasieu and Cameron Parishes who know how imperative it is for us to all work together to create the best future possible for the Lake Area.”


Edmiston has established partnerships throughout the community, committed staff to the Just Imagine Resilience Plan, brought the first PGA Korn Ferry Lake Charles Championship to the area, demonstrated strong leadership throughout the challenges of 2020, hosted the first international press conference for Lake Charles at the US Travel Association’s IPW, and has fostered product development in the community by working with governmental agencies and the business community.


“Kyle embodies leadership for our destination. Visit Lake Charles has been an integral partner not only for the City of Lake Charles, but for a variety of organizations, providing vision and support to achieve goals for the community as a whole,” said Mayor Nic Hunter of Lake Charles.


Most recently, Kyle won the Marion "Butch" Fox Advocacy Award from the Louisiana Trave Association in 2022. In 2017, Kyle was honored as the National State Tourism Director of the Year by his colleagues and was named one of the Top 25 Extraordinary Minds in the United States for Marketing by Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI).  He was awarded the Southeast Tourism Society Rising Star Award in 2009 and earned his Certified Destination Management Executive (CDME) from Destinations International in 2008.   

Currently, he serves on the executive committee of Destinations International’s board of directors, and he is the immediate past-chair of the board for the Louisiana Travel Association. He is a past chair of the Brand USA board of directors, and he is on the board of directors of U.S. Travel Association. He previously served as chair of Travel South USA’s board of directors and the Louisiana Association of CVBs.