Southern Ocean Chamber CEO Lori Pepenella to Be Honored for Tourism Leadership

Apr 18, 2018

Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce CEO Lori A. Pepenella will be recognized for tourism leadership during the Salute to Ocean County event by receiving the Freeholder Joseph Vicari Award of Tourism Achievement. The April 19 event is the seventh annual Salute to Ocean County: A Celebration of Arts and Heritage. It will be presented by the Ocean County Cultural and Heritage Commission, in conjunction with Ocean County College and the Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation.

The event honors Ocean County’s outstanding cultural organizations and recognizes exceptional local artists, historians, preservationists, educators and leaders.

Under Pepenella’s direction, the century-strong chamber is one of two globally accredited destination marketing organizations in the state and has leveraged several grassroots marketing programs into economic drivers for hundreds of area businesses.

Pepenella was nominated and chosen by colleagues throughout the county, through the Ocean County Business and Tourism Advisory Board. In addition to serving on the county board since 2008, she has been recognized on a state and national level for initiatives that have brought the Long Beach Island region into the forefront for tourism leadership.

The Ocean County Tourism and Business Advisory Council was established by the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders to identify, promote and support Ocean County’s tourism assets. In recent years, the council created an annual award in the name of the tourism liaison, Freeholder Joseph H. Vicari, to recognize an individual or organization who has significantly contributed to the growth of tourism in Ocean County.

The celebration will be held at the Jay and Linda Grunin Center for the Arts at Ocean County College and will begin with a dessert reception at 6 p.m.

In addition to acknowledging the recipients of the commission’s Local Arts and History Program Grants, the evening will feature awards for distinction in the arts and history, and performances by students Critiqued for Excellence as part of the 2018 Teen Arts Festival of Ocean County. The Teen Arts Festival is a prominent showcase for young artists. Students from a selection of local high schools in the county exhibit perform and present their work, which is then critiqued by professional artists from throughout the state. —M.S.

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