ALBANY, NY - Thursday, at the Albany County Convention and Visitors Bureau's Annual Meeting, the hospitality community honored 24 "Albany Ambassadors," for their help filling more than 4,700 hotel rooms and generating $5.4M in spending in Albany. The bureau also presented the recently renamed Professor Anthony Strianese Hospitality Excellence Award to the Palace Theatre Performing Arts Center for outstanding programming and community commitment.

Albany Ambassadors
Albany Ambassadors are volunteers who bring meetings and events to Albany, building new business and civic pride. The 2016 Albany Ambassadors were responsible for bringing over 8286 delegates to Albany in 2016 and their meetings filled more than 4749 hotel rooms in Albany translating to more than $5.4 million in direct spending.

The 2016 Albany Ambassadors are:

Jennifer Acker, IDS Project
IDS Project 2016 Annual Conference

Melissa Bergin, Section of School Librarians (SSL)
2016 Annual Conference

Duane Booth, Sons of the American Revolution, Empire State Society Chapter
2016 Annual Conference

Tom Catino, Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials International (APCO)
2016 Combined Conference & Exhibition APCO & NYS 9*1*1 Communications Association

Mario Cometti, VetCon Alliance
2016 Veterans in Economic Transition (VetCon)

Maureen Cox, Mohawk Hudson River Marathon & Half Marathon
2016 Annual Conference/Event

Doug Dederick, Kevin & Sandra Surman, National Model Railroad Association
The Pacemaker 2016 Northeast Regional Model Railroad Convention

Jeanne Farrell, North American Feis Commission
2016 FAC Convention

Fausto Franco, Hispanic Regional Catholic Conference
2016 Annual Conference

Karen Graham, Upstate Dance Challenge

Rebecca Ireland-Perry, New York State Cooperative Extension,
4-H Educators 4-H Capital Days!!

Helen Mango & Tim Grover, Northeastern Section of the Geological Society of American (NESGSA) 2016 Annual Conference

Mitchell Samet, Ph.D., New York Association School Psychologists
2016 Board Meetings

Shari Schatzman, New York State Association for Behavior Analysis
2016 Annual Conference

Jerry Silber, Star Trek Association of the Northeast
2016 Star Trek Convention

Elizabeth Simcoe & Joyce Solimini, Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany
2016 FDLC National Conference

Annette Tedesco, Nor'easter Scrabble Tournament
July Tournament and December Tournament 2016

Michael Trimarchi, Columbia Greene Community College
T-10 Training (Automotive) Meeting

Sarah Wilamsowski, Alpha Phi Omega
2016 Annual Conference

To receive the designation of Albany Ambassador, one must be an event or committee volunteer and the meeting must account for more than 100 room nights. This marks the 24th year that the ACCVB has honored an exceptional group of Albany Ambassadors.

Professor Anthony Strianese Hospitality Excellence Award
The ACCVB Hospitality Excellence Award is the only honor developed solely to recognize excellence in travel and tourism in the Capital Region. This year's recipient was the Palace Theatre Performing Arts Center program. The Palace is an arts and entertainment anchor that attracts more than 175,000 patrons annually. Their performances attract travelers to Albany, creating a significant impact on surrounding businesses.

About the ACCVB:
The Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Inc. was established in 1976 to promote the civic and commercial progress of the community through increased development of conventions and tourism. ACCVB currently represents more than 300 member businesses and assists each year in hundreds of regional meetings. ACCVB also operates the Albany Heritage Area Visitors Center, Henry Hudson Planetarium, and the Albany International Airport Information Center. For more information, call 518-434-1217 or 800-258-3582 or visit