By Todd LaPorte | Point of View
Scottsdale is blessed with key large-scale events throughout the year.
As we draw to a close on this year’s “Super Season” that featured events from ESPN’s tailgate party, the WM Phoenix Open and MLB Spring Training to Barrett-Jackson and the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show, I would like to offer my perspective on the importance of these events and local tourism, and how they impact our local economy.
As the CEO at HonorHealth, the largest employer in Scottsdale, I witness first-hand how much these high-caliber events support our ongoing economic development.
Drawing visitors to the area allows us to shine the spotlight on what a great place Scottsdale is to live, work and play.
Making a good impression can influence a visitor’s decision if they are presented with the chance to move here for a job opportunity. The labor market continues to tighten across the U.S., and it is getting harder and harder to attract skilled workers not only in healthcare, but also in other industries critically important to our long-term success, including finance, insurance and high tech.
Our efforts to bring the best and brightest to this area must be a focus for all of us to ensure a bright future. These large events are one important way to accomplish this goal.
I’ve been fortunate to attend many events during this year’s Super Season, and it has allowed me the opportunity to meet many business leaders from various companies across the U.S.
In talking with them, many have never been to the area before, so these events often serve as the first introduction. Therefore, making a good impression on these leaders is critical to having Scottsdale be considered for a future corporate or regional headquarters.
LaPorte: Scottsdale tourism industry is key ingredient to beautiful life we all enjoy
Attracting these big events, as well as landing large conventions and conferences, and supporting leisure tourism, is a big responsibility. Experience Scottsdale, a nonprofit, private company, does an outstanding job with destination marketing by raising the profile of the Scottsdale area through branding and positive experiences, increasing exposure and playing a key role in attracting major events.
Additionally, they generate future investments that positively impact the quality of life of all who live and work here.
So why is tourism so important? First, it is a multi-billion-dollar industry that is essential to our city’s vitality. In 2021, Scottsdale’s 9.7 million annual visitors generated $2.5 billion in economic impact. Second, travel is the first step in shaping perspectives, and Experience Scottsdale’s destination promotion contributes to a positive overall impression of the area.
In fact, consumers who recalled the advertising from Experience Scottsdale were not only more likely to visit, but also more likely to view Scottsdale as a good place to live, work, start a business, attend college, purchase a vacation home and retire.
As a proud resident and leader of a Scottsdale-based organization, it’s a privilege to serve as a member of the board and executive committee for Experience Scottsdale. In both my leadership role at HonorHealth and in my board capacity for Experience Scottsdale, I’m committed to advancing Scottsdale as a great place to work, live and play.
As part of that pledge, HonorHealth is increasing our support to promoting health and well-being, as evidenced by our leadership and commitment to the Blue Zones project. With the leadership of Experience Scottsdale, and the continued support and partnership of local businesses, the city will remain a top destination for large events for many years to come.
Editor’s note: Mr. LaPorte is the CEO at HonorHealth.