Vic Isley is a North Carolina native from Rockingham County and is a graduate of UNC-Kenan-Flagler Business School. Her father, mother, and brothers’ family still reside in Rockingham and her sister and husband are in Raleigh. She has enjoyed watching Asheville grow and change through the years, but appreciates that it has” kept its DNA”. After an extensive career in Travel industry leadership all around the country, she is happy to return to her home state and is excited to be in “a community that [has its] own character, personality and special brand of crazy”
Vic Isley loves the storytelling of her job, where she gets to share narratives “ about the people and places that make a community so distinct, [which] Asheville has in spades”. Isley was also attracted by the unique way that Asheville uses occupancy taxes for community investment. Many cities use these funds for convention centers and sports arenas, but we use the Tourism Development Fund for projects like the Wilma Dykeman Greenway, the YMI Cultural Center, and the Asheville Art Museum.
Explore Asheville’s goals for the city are guided by the 4 Strategic Pillars, which focus on sustainable tourism and balancing the needs of the local community with a safe tourist experience. Vic is an avid traveler and feels the meaning of travel is “a human’s desire to explore new places, people and cultures and [that] it doesn’t happen if there are no humans there to deliver the experience. That is the exchange that is of value…. The economic benefit that comes from that exchange is what the community reaps, businesses and residents in terms of jobs and the entrepreneurial spirit “.
The CVB has made it a priority to focus on the quality of the visit for the visitor and for the community. This translates into working towards increasing the length of stay which is currently a 1.8-night average. Isley believes that when tourists’ spending in the community is better dispersed throughout more businesses, it gives “ more opportunities for more people to win”.
Isley enjoys being a part of the Asheville community. She is a fan of live music and appreciates the variety of great local venues. She loves food and frequenting restaurants as well as shopping at farmer’s markets for her own fresh cooking ingredients. We look forward to having her speak at the General Membership Meeting to learn more about how Explore can partner effectively with West Asheville businesses.
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